Doctor insights on:
Can You Die In Your Sleep From Sleep Apnea
Sleep apnea has two causes. It may be 'central' or 'obstructive'. Central apnea occurs as a disorder in the way the brain controls breathing. Obstructive sleep apnea is much more common and involves an anatomical blockage of the airway. Usually, the tongue blocks the airway, preventing the passage of air between the a sleep study is needed to diagnose particular ...Read more
Indirectly: Untreated sleep apnea causes drops in oxygen levels during sleep, this causes a release of catecholamines which are of "stress hormones". Over time this can increase the risk of high blood pressure, diabetes, heart disease, and pulmonary hypertension. Overtime these can lead to death. In addition the sleep deprivation leads to increase car accidents, which can be fatal. Treatment helps avoid this. ...Read more
Yes: If totally ignored it can be a cause of death. However, that is extremely unlikely as it is usually slowly progressive and usually forces one to see a doctor because the symptoms are so miserable. ...Read more
Death from apnea-yes: There is a five fold risk of dying from cancer with severe sleep apnea. Also a higher risk of heart disease. With daytime sleepiness, there is an increases risk of traffic accidents. After general anesthesia or narcotic pain medicine, there is an increased risk of dying in your sleep. If you awaken frequently, snore heavily, or have daytime sleepiness, would be wise to check with your doctor. ...Read more
Can you die from obstructive sleep apnea? What causes death? Is it preventable? What test do you need to have run on you?
Obstructive sleep apnea is a chronic condition that is tough on your body. It happens when your airway closes off as you sleep causing disrupted sleep, snoring and fatigue and sleepiness the next day. Osa causes early mortality due to the chronic low oxygen levels at night and causes heart and lung disease and contributes to memory problems.
It is diagnosed in a sleep clinic where you check in at night, sleep in their bed with monitors on your arms, legs, head and chest for the night. If you have obvious osa they will often wake you and put a CPAP device on you to see if it helps you keep your airway open on that same night.
Cpap is a device that you wear under your nose or on your face like a mask and it helps put continuous airway pressure to keep your airway from closing.
Folks with osa describe feeling tired all the time "like I am walking through mud". They fall asleep at the wheel driving and get high blood pressure.
The diagnostic test is easy and just takes one night to help decide if this is a problem for you. ...Read more
Can you die from central sleep apnea? I was just diagnosed and cant tolerate cpap. I want to find out the reason for csa. Ep said not heart. Now what?
Yes: That can be related.Get a more detailed answer ›
No cure: There is high failure rate of surgical procedures for sleep apnea. Best treatment is the CPAP mask adjusted to the right pressure. There are some that automatically adjust themselves for the best pressure. Need to get the most comfortable mask & less noisy machine. Complications of surgery include airway obstruction, bleeding, hematoma, infection, pain, death, dysphagia, velopharyngeal etc... ...Read more
Closed airway: Sleep apnea is the closure of the airway or significant narrowing of the airway during sleep. Risk factors include being male, being overweight, having a large neck, being a snorer and having daytime sleepiness. Sleep apnea increases your risk of stroke, heart attack and high blood pressure. ...Read more
Not breathing: Apnea is breath-holding, or not breathing. Some people have periods of time they don't breath while they are asleep. Sometimes it is related to body weight, other times it is neurological. Treatment usually involves weight loss, mouthguards to reposition the mouth, or even cpap. If not treated, this can lead to lung/heart problems, chronic fatigue, weight gain, and high blood pressure. ...Read more
Yes: It has been published that it affects 4% of men and 2% of women, but personally, I think it is much higher. Unfortunately, it has been given lower priority than other medical conditions. That is now changing as we are discovering that is is associated with considerable medical and psychiatric morbidity and even mortality. ...Read more
Gasping for air: Sleep apnea is defined as complete (apnea) or partial obstruction (hypopnia) of the airway during sleep. Typical signs and symptoms are snoring, wake up gasping for air, and excessive daytime sleepiness. Diagnosis is made by a sleep study (polysomnogram) and the main parameter of diagnosis is ahi (apnea-hypopnea index). Mild sleep apnea ranges from 5-10 ahi. ...Read more
Yes: Yes, it is often inherited, but not always. One reason has to do with the fact that we look similar to our relatives. The facial bone growth determines the size of the airway and may be narrow in families with sleep apnea. Other familial factors may be obesity, size of tonsils and adenoids, muscle tone and how we breathe when we sleep. ...Read more
No breathing: Sleep apnea (sa) is a condition where you stop breathing during sleep for 10 secs or more. Sometimes this is a neurological problem where the signal to breathe is interrupted. Sometimes the signal is fine, but there is blockage by the tongue or tissues of the throat. Either way, it is dangerous and needs to be evaluated by your md and treated appropriately. Call today. ...Read more
Just another term: For sleep apnea. There are several types: obstructive, where the air is blocked from getting to your lungs by collapse of your upper airways during sleep, and central sleep apnea where your brain does not send the signals to your lungs to breathe, and the third type which is a mixture of the two. I cannot think of a sleep apnea that would not be organic, because there is no psychogenic sleep apnea. ...Read more
R/O OSA: OSA can be suggested by history and physical. Excess snoring/daytime sleepiness/apneic episodes/ aM headaches. And the Exam obesity/small oral airway/collar size>18. The definitive test is a PSG with split night/CPAP titration. I would request copy of sleep study and get a second opinion if you are not satisfied with the options. You are young CPAP can be difficult to tolerate. ENT FOR UPP EVAL. ...Read more
OSA: Obstructive sleep apnea occurs when breathing stops (apnea) during sleep usually as a result of a temporary obstruction such as a narrowing and closing in the oropharynx. When the brain detects that breathing has stopped, an alarm goes up that wakes the person so that he starts breathing again. Often the person does not know why he has woken. An observer may note snoring or gasping in the night. ...Read more
Sleep apnea.: The only way to tell if you truly have sleep apnea is by doing a sleep study. If you have suspected sleep apnea, it is a good idea to try to lose weight if you are heavy to see if that solves the problem. If it does not, then a sleep study may be necessary. If that confirms sleep apnea, wearing a mask with continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) while sleeping usually helps. Good luck. ...Read more
Being over weight is probably the biggest risk factor. A loss of muscle tone in neck muscles as we get older. Heredity undoubtedly plays a role. Having a large tongue. Other contributing factors are an underdeveloped lower jaw, a narrow upper jaw and a high palate. These all tend to block the airway and lead to obstructive sleep apnea.
In central sleep apnea the brain doesn't say to breath. ...Read more
Tape yourself: The easiest way to determine whether you have sleep apnea is to take a tape recorder and tape your sleep at night. The next day rewind and listen to see if you snore and have your irregular respirations. If there is a pause and you hear some gasping that is sleep apnea. At that point you should have sleep study which will confirm the diagnosis. Good luck and well wishes. ...Read more
Snoring: The symptoms are daytime fatigue, snoring, frequent waking, frequency of night time urination, but tiredness during the day very hard to deal with. Get diagnosed by sleep study and treated. Apnea carries risk of heart attack, stroke and other nasty things. Your family doctor can arrange the study and most insurances cover it. You will feel so much better after a good nights sleep. ...Read more
Yes: Sleep apnea can result from anatomic obstruction in the nose (deviated septum, swollen turbinates, sinusitis, etc) or over relaxation of the smooth muscles that line the trachea (wind pipe). It's true that sleep apnea was classically though to be found only in elderly overweight men, but that's been found to not be true. Children can have osa from enlarged tonsils or adenoids. Consult a sleep doc. ...Read more
Not just weight: Anatomy is king. Obstructive sleep apnea happens in a small airway "box". The airway can be small if what's in it takes up space or if the box is smaller. Weight gain increases tongue size and the thickness of the side walls of the throat. Tonsils may be large. Small jaw size, often inherited, will increase the risk of osa. Low muscle tone is also a factor. ...Read more
Depends on cause: "by itself" is the important part of the question -- there are modifications that can be made to reduce risk and occurrence. Weight loss is an example. In many cases, the obstruction of the airway requires treatment such as cpap, surgery, or other treatment and the problem will not go away by itself. Discuss further with your physician for your individual situation. ...Read more
This is the cessation of breathing for 10 seconds or more. Most apnea is obstructive being caused by collapse or obstruction of the airway leading to lack of air flow. However, it can be a central process, where the respiratory center of the brain fails to signal the respiratory respiratory system to initiate a breath. Lastly, some apnea is mixed central ...Read more
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