Obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) is the most common sleep-related breathing disorder, and it is well-documented to have a serious impact on a patient’s quality of life, work efficiency, and driving safety. In terms of lifestyle issues, there appears to be an association between the presence of OSA and erectile dysfunction in men. Untreated OSA may also lead to hypertension, coronary artery disease, vascular disease, memory impairment, stroke, and adult onset diabetes. Almost 40% of patients with OSA have elevated blood pressure, and it appears that patients with OSA may have a two to three times increased risk of heart attack and stroke.
OSA may also have a significant impact on the health of children. Children with OSA have been shown to suffer from bed-wetting (enuresis), behavior problems, deficient attention span, obesity, and failure to thrive. Heart and lung problems (cor pulmonale, pulmonary hypertension) may also co-exist in children with sleep apnea.
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