Obstructive sleep apnea is highly prevalent in patients with MS
Results show that one-fifth of MS patients surveyed in a large tertiary MS practice carried a diagnosis of OSA, and more than half were found to have an elevated risk for OSA based on a validated screening tool. Further analysis showed that OSA risk was a significant predictor of fatigue severity, even after adjusting for potential confounders such as age, gender, body mass index (BMI), sleep duration and depression.
“OSA may be a highly prevalent and yet under-recognized contributor to fatigue in persons with MS,” said lead author and principal investigator
The study results appear in the
“Obstructive sleep apnea is a chronic illness that can have a destructive impact on your health and quality of life,” said
Braley and her colleagues,
According to the authors, the cross-sectional design of the study did not allow for an examination of cause-and-effect relationships. However, the results suggest that a substantial portion of MS-related fatigue could be eliminated by the diagnosis and successful treatment of OSA in patients with MS.
The AASM reports that OSA is a common sleep disorder that affects up to seven percent of men and five percent of women. It involves repetitive episodes of complete or partial upper airway obstruction occurring during sleep despite an ongoing effort to breathe. The most effective treatment option for OSA is Continuous Positive Airway Pressure (CPAP) therapy, which helps to keep the airway open by providing a stream of air through a mask that is worn during sleep.
To request a copy of the study, “Obstructive Sleep Apnea and Fatigue in Patients with Multiple Sclerosis,” or to arrange an interview with the study author or an AASM spokesperson, please contact Communications Coordinator
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