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Snorers represent a heterogenous group that require adequate assessment before recommending surgical treatment. There are unfortunately no specific features either in the history or physical examination that might predict those chronic snorers with obstructive sleep apnoea. We have used trained observation together with pulse oximetry ('sleep screening') and fibreoptic nasendoscopy with Muller manoeuvre in our unit to assess snorers. This combination is a reliable means of distinguishing apnoeic patients from simple snorers and determining the level of the obstructing segment. We report our experience in using these methods in the management of 71 chronic snorers. We stress the value of conservative management, and emphasize that obesity, habitual alcohol ingestion and nasal obstruction should be corrected before embarking on pharyngeal surgery.