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Sleep Disorders

Obstructive Sleep Apnea

Obstructive Sleep Apnea, or OSA, is a disorder which interferes with a person's ability to breathe while sleeping.

OSA occurs when the muscles in the back of the throat relax during sleep which causes the tissues in the throat to collapse and block the airway, . OSA can also occur if the neurons that control breathing malfunction during sleep. During an episode of OSA, air flow can be obstructed for anywhere between 10 seconds to one minute.  As the person's blood oxygen level falls, the brain reacts and briefly awakens enough so that the throat muscles will tighten and clear the windpipe. When this happens it is common for the person to snort or gasp, and then resume snoring. This process can be repeated hundreds of times a night.

The frequent awakenings that are experienced by OSA patients can have a number of effects on the patient's overall health. These effects include leaving the patient continually sleepy, changes in personality (such as irritability or depression), a loss of interest in sex, and a decline in mental functioning. It can also lead to morning headaches as it can deprive the person of oxygen. Approximately 18 million Americans are estimated to suffer from OSA, however, few of them have had proper diagnosis.

Epidemiology

Click on the link above to view epidemiologic information related to Obstructive Sleep Apnea. This will include information which relates to the incidence and distribution of OSA across a population. This will also include information regarding the prevalence of OSA across a population in relation to specific factors, such as ethnicity, age, gender, etc...

Symptoms & Diagnosis

Click on the link above to view information regarding the diagnosis of Obstructive Sleep Apnea. This will describe the preferential methods used to identify patients who suffer from OSA.

Treatment

Click on the link above to view information regarding the treatment of Obstructive Sleep Apnea. This will describe the latest techniques used to help treat patients suffering from OSA, as well as the rate of success and possible implications of using the respective treatment.

Co-morbidities & Consequences

Click on the link above to view information regarding the types of co-morbidities that have been identified in patients suffering from Obstructive Sleep Apnea.

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