A study published in this month’s Journal of Clinical Sleep Medicine indicates that Obstructive Sleep Apnea is associated with cardiac dysfunction even in the absence of Congestive Heart Failure.
A total of 79 patients with sleep disordered breathing, but preserved systolic function, and normal pro-brain natriuretic peptide level were enrolled. Sixty-five patients were classified to have moderate to severe OSAS (apnea-hypopnea index [AHI] ≥ 15/h), while the other 14 patients with mild or no OSAS (AHI < 15/h) served as control subjects.
The left atrial size, mitral A-wave velocity, and left ventricular end-diastolic volume were significantly larger, while E/A ratio was lower in patients with moderate to severe OSA than those without (p < 0.05). Notably, Apnea Hypopnea Index (number of times a patient stops breathing per hour) in Rapid Eye Movement sleep was significantly correlated with the aortic root size, E/A ratio, left ventricular volume, and stroke volume. In addition, the area under the receiver operator characteristic curve for AHI in REM sleep ≥ 32.3/h was 0.647 (95% CI [0.525, 0.769]) in predicting the development of left ventricular diastolic dysfunction.
Patients with moderate to severe OSAS tend to have cardiac dysfunction revealed by echocardiography. High AHI in REM sleep is significantly associated with cardiovascular remodeling and ventricular diastolic dysfunction, and may be a potential variable to predict cardiac dysfunction.
If you snore, please talk to your physician or us about a convenient and cost-effective home sleep test to diagnose sleep apnea.