Obstructive Sleep Apnea affects over 300,000 people in Belgium alone. That’s something to lose sleep over. So when Nyxoah showed us their solution we jumped at the chance to help bring this technology to market.

In simple terms OSA is when the muscles in your throat and tongue relax and block off the airways during sleeping. This disturbance not only causes snoring but briefly wakes the sufferer. This frequent disturbance leads to exhaustion, memory loss, depression, and a general lowered quality of life. The current treatments involve wearing an uncomfortable CPAP mask attached to a noisy ventilator, or involve implanting a neurostimulator and sensor. This high cost solution requires invasive surgery for it's short lifetime implants.

The system that the Belgian-Israeli start-up Nyxoah has developed is compact and requires simple outpatient implantation just under the chin. This implant directly stimulates the tongue muscles when needed. The implant itself is wirelessly powered by a small activation chip that the patient wears under the chin on a disposable patch when sleeping. Since most of the complexity lies in the activation chip, the implant is kept simple, giving it a long lifetime. While Nyxoah had the technology under control they needed a partner to help create a complete system that guarantees a user friendly approach for patients, doctors, and surgeons.

The most important part of the system is of course the implant itself. Here we helped to determine how the implant is anchored to the tongue muscle. Together with a surgeon, we designed a one-time use tool that allows for quick and precise implantation. On the outside of the body, Achilles was also responsible for the production-ready mechanical design of the patch itself, the activation chip, a charging station for the activation chip, and a diagnostic tool for doctors, as well as it's digital interface. At the moment clinical trials are running successfully. Based on insights from these trials we are preparing for mass production of the therapy.

The result of this cooperation is a minimally invasive, compact, comfortable, effective, and affordable solution for sufferers from Obstructive Sleep Apnea.


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