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Dr N. de Vries (1956) has been named professor by special appointment of Dental Sleep Medicine at the University of Amsterdam’s Faculty of Dentistry (ACTA). The chair was established by the ApneuResearch Foundation.

Prof Nico de Vries
Photo: Dirk Gillissen

As professor by special appointment, Nico de Vries will focus on teaching, research and patient care in the rapidly developing field of dental sleep medicine. Sleep-related disorders are increasingly being diagnosed. According to recent estimates, for instance, more than 400,000 people in the Netherlands have been diagnosed with obstructive sleep apnea syndrome (OSAS). This condition is characterised by repetitive pauses in breathing during sleep (an apnea) and is caused by a relaxation of the muscles whereby the tongue and soft tissue in the throat obstruct the airway. It is also associated with health risks such as excessive drowsiness during daytime, cognitive decline and cardiovascular problems. Dental and oral surgery treatments are playing an increasingly important role in the treatment of sleep-related disorders. In his research, De Vries will concentrate on, among other things, the possible link between OSAS and bruxism (grinding of the teeth) and the predictive value of sleep endoscopy.

De Vries is an ear, throat and nose (ENT) specialist at the Sint Lucas Andreas hospital in Amsterdam. He is an expert in the field of sleep medicine, particularly OSAS, and works closely with dentists inside and outside the Netherlands. De Vries is also a visiting professor at the Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences of the University of Antwerp. He has published more than 170 articles in national and international peer reviewed journals, including the New England Journal of Medicine, the Laryngoscope, Sleep and Breathing and the Nederlandse Tijdschrift voor Keel-Neus-Oorheelkunde.