Sleep Apnea: nothing to snore about

PWN is developing a series of podcasts dedicated to sleep apnea, a very common related condition in people with active or controlled acromegaly.  Stay tuned for an engaging series of doctor-patient podcasts where we’ll discuss the ins and outs of this condition, its risk factors, treatments, and outcomes.

Here’s a preview:

If you have acromegaly – whether active or controlled – chances are you are dealing with Sleep Apnea.  Sleep Apnea is one of those fun “related” conditions that affect a great number of people with acromegaly.   It can have a definitive impact on quality of life.  Sleep apnea happens when there is the partial collapse of the upper airways soft tissue during sleep, which causes a person to partially or completely stop breathing.   Typically, someone is said to have Sleep Apnea if they have more than 5 apneas or hypopneas in an hour of sleep.

There are ways to measure the Apnea-Hypopnea Index (AHI) which is used to indicate the severity of the condition.  The AHI measures the number of apneas and hypopneas recorded during an hour of sleep. Less than 5 per hour is considered none or minimal.  This article does a nice job explaining the classification and the consequences of oxygen desaturation. 

Another recent article published in Endocrine Abstracts suggests Sleep Apnea deserves the attention of every person with acromegaly since it can lead to other related conditions and risk factors such as hypertension, stroke, cardiovascular disease, which can occur in 11 to 30% of acromegaly patients.  As mentioned earlier, smaller studies have suggested sleep apnea occurs in 70 to 75% of people with active acromegaly and 40% after biochemical control.

Treatment can typically improve the severity of SAS but sometimes, as it was with my case, the use of a CPAP device is necessary to improve outcomes.

Listen to the latest podcast on Sleep Apnea where we cover some of the insight we gained as well as the treatment options and outcomes.

Click here to go to the podcast

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