Cardiovascular Complications of Obstructive Sleep Apnoea


Obstructive Sleep Apnoea is a sleep disorder which has symptom we usually disregard. Snoring is OSA’s major symptom that we treat as a normal habit or custom we think we should not worry about.

Obstructive Sleep Apnoea affects no gender and age. Even children can be diagnosed with OSA which makes them the most unlucky sufferer of this sleeping condition. This is because, the prolong suffering would call for more complications such as cardiovascular complications if diagnose later in life.

Many research and studies have shown association between Obstructive sleep apnoea and various cardiovascular events that can happen to both children and adults. These cardiovascular issues can be minor or major depending on how long OSA is present, the age of sufferer, their lifestyle, and their current health problems if any.

Due to the complete occlusion of the upper airway during sleep brought by Obstructive sleep apnoea or snoring, this leads to disturbed in sleep as well as in homeostatic gas exchange that later on can be the primary cause of cardiovascular problems like the following:

  1. Hypertension – OSA is now included as one of the main causes of hypertension and high blood pressure. Almost 35% of OSA patients have hypertension and the risk of hypertension increases as the OSA gets severe. NCPAP (Nasal Continuous Positive Airway Pressure) however, can reduce blood pressure by 10mm Hg in OSA patients if use at night and day.
  2. Stroke – OSA can also increase the chance of stroke incidents. OSA patients with 5-25 AHI is said to have 6% increase in stroke risk.
  3. Heart Failure – Research also predicted heart failure incident in some of OSA sufferer. Untreated OSA with AHI of ≥ 15 has increased mortality rate compared to OSA patients with ≤ 15.

Obstructive Sleep Apnoea can also contribute to having oxidative stress. Oxidative stress is caused by either a decreased in antioxidant capacity and/or overproduction of ROS/RNS. This can result to a damage DNA which leads to failed physiological mechanisms. Strong evidences showed association of OSA cases in most cardiovascular and oxidative stress events.

Undiagnosed and untreated OSA can lead to a lot of complications most especially to our cardiovascular system. It is always advisable to seek professional advice as soon as possible on how to diagnose and treat snoring or OSA.

Snoring in children can be normal and might suspect for a sniff when a child has cold. But to be sure, have your children checked for OSA possibility so the risk for cardiovascular events can be avoided as early as possible.

If you or your love one is suffering from snoring, don’t disregard the issue as this can bring the patient to a more serious health threats. Apparently, OSA treatments range from non-invasive and invasive treatments that will help patients to recover from snoring, avoid complications, and most importantly get back to the normal and peaceful life they deserve.


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