Sleep Apnea Can Affect Your Eyesight

Beyond the lack of quality sleep and the myriad of life complications that result from that, sleep apnea can actually affect your eyesight too!

From Florida Today:

Sleep apnea adversely affects the delicate and fragile vessels in the eye, particularly the retina, by sudden fluctuations of blood pressure and oxygen levels. During undisturbed sleep, the systemic blood pressure decreases slowly. Retinal vessels dilate to match blood flow based upon oxygen and metabolic demands.In obstructive sleep apnea, oxygen levels drop rapidly and dramatically. Retinal vessels respond by dilating maximally to prevent retinal damage from oxygen deprivation or ischemia. The brain, however, responds to a lack of oxygen in the blood by releasing epinephrine and norepinephrine hormones that cause blood pressure spikes. These repeated hypertensive episodes throughout the night result in nests of micro-infarcts or mini-strokes and damage the retinal tissue.

Read the rest of the article regarding sleep apnea and eyesight right here.

Or, if you already know you are suffering from sleep apnea and it’s complications, contact us now for a confidential consultation.

Obstructive Sleep Apnea Linked to Maternal Deaths

A large scale study recently published in the journal Sleep finds a significant correlation between obstructive sleep apnea and maternal deaths for female hospital patients:

Pregnant women with obstructive sleep apnea are more than five times as likely to die in the hospital than those without the sleep disorder, a comprehensive national study by the University of South Florida researchers found.

Among delivery-related hospital discharges, sleep apnea was also associated with an increase in severe medical conditions that are top causes of maternal death, including preeclampsia, eclampsia, an enlarged heart and pulmonary blood clots, reported the study published online this month in the journal Sleep.

The study linking maternal deaths with sleep apnea was conducted by Dr. Judette Louis, assistant professor of obstetrics and gynecology at the University of South Florida’s Health Morsani College of Medicine. Dr. Louis specializes in maternal-fetal medicine.

sleep apnea surgery - Surgical Sleep Solutions

Even NFL Athletes Can Suffer From Sleep Apnea

According to a New England Journal of Medicine study, a significant number of National Football League (NFL) players suffer from sleep apnea despite the fact that they are some of the nation’s top athletes:

A new medical study finds that up to one-third of NFL players have sleep apnea, a disorder that creates serious health risks and increases the chance that players will not get a good night’s sleep before they hit the gridiron.

Fifty-two professional football players from eight randomly selected NFL teams were tested for the obstructive sleep apnea study, cited in the latest issue of The New England Journal of Medicine.

Above-average body mass indexes and neck circumferences are two readily apparent physical signs that a person may be prone to obstructive sleep apnea, and of course professional football players fit those bills. The sleep disorder was determined to be a factor in the death of famed defensive end and standout athlete Reggie White, sadly at the age of just 43.

Are You At Risk for Obstructive Sleep Apnea?

Even if you are an athlete, you could suffer from OSA. Complete Surgical Sleep Solutions’ Sleep Improvement Profiler quiz to find out if you’re at risk.

If you know that you suffer from sleep apnea, if you are not satisfied with your current sleep apnea plan, or if you are curious about surgical treatments for sleep apnea such as bimaxillary advancement, you may wish to speak with one of our physicians. Contact Surgical Sleep Solutions today to find out more.

“Beauty Sleep” Isn’t A Fantasy

Looking good means getting a good night’s sleep, especially for women.

In fact, science suggests that women actually need more sleep than men do. Without restful sleep, women are more prone to waking up downbeat or mad, recent studies show. And sleepy women have an increased risk of heart attacks and strokes compared with sleep-deprived men.

“These associations tended to be much more strongly observed in women than in men,” said Dr. Edward Suarez, a Duke University sleep specialist whose study showed that women are more likely to display worsening mood, anger or hostility after inadequate sleep than men.

And while women are less susceptible to sleep apnea, it must take a toll on their rest if the person laying next to them at night sounds like a tractor trailer hitting its air brakes.

Never a bad time to get that snoring problem checked out – your looks may depend on it!

Sleep Apnea Tied to Increased Hospital Visits for Heart Patients

Atrial fibrillation, an abnormal or fluttering heartbeat, can be complicated by obstructive sleep apnea (OSA). According to recent findings, heart patients suffering from both had a significantly higher rate of hospitalizations:

About 18% of U.S. patients with atrial fibrillation also have a diagnosis of obstructive sleep apnea, and the confluence of the two appeared linked to increased hospitalizations and further progression of atrial fibrillation, based on a registry of more than 10,000 U.S. atrial fibrillation patients.

In addition, patients who have AF and OSA and who are treated with continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) have a reduced rate of AF progression, Dr. Jonathan P. Piccini Sr. said at the annual meeting of the American College of Cardiology.

While use of CPAP has led to lower complications, many heart patients who utilize CPAP find it uncomfortable and disruptive. Because of these issues, a significant number of patients don’t consistently use the devices and instead continue to suffer from the symptoms and consequences of sleep apnea.

Heart Patients with Sleep Apnea: Consider Surgical Sleep Solutions

Untreated obstructive sleep apnea can affect your heart, your mind, and your overall health. Whether or not you are a heart patient suffering from atrial fibrillation, treating your OSA can help you become more healthy simply by allowing your body to sleep restfully. Learn more about Surgical Sleep Solutions’ low-risk, low-complication alternative to CPAP, a procedure called bimaxallary advancement.

If you’d like more information about CPAP alternatives, permanent OSA solutions, or sleep apnea surgeries, call Surgical Sleep Solutions today.

New York Area MTA Looks to Screen for Sleep Apnea

A fatal train crash in the Bronx borough last December prompted an investigation by the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB). Their finding: the engineer was suffering from a severe case of sleep apnea that caused him to fall asleep while manning the train. Now the Metropolitan Transit Authority (MTA) is looking at options to screen for sleep apnea:

The Metropolitan Transportation Authority wants to prevent disasters like last December’s Metro-North crash by screening employees for sleep apnea.

The agency, and the union representing Metro-North workers, said they are studying ways to implement those screenings.

The MTA isn’t the only transportation organization looking to screen for sleep apnea. A number of state and federal groups are currently researching the link between sleep apnea and commercial driving in hopes of developing working policies regarding the sleep disorder and transportation employees.

Airline pilots and train engineers are responsible for the safety of passengers of the modes they operate. Getting a solid night’s sleep is crucial to maintaining that safety.

If you are the operator of any type of machine, whether it be a plane, train, or automobile, it’s worth knowing if you have sleep apnea; take our confidential profiler to find out.

Weight and Sleep Apnea: Chicken or the Egg

Numerous studies have linked above-average body mass indices with sleep apnea. But did you know that snoring, one of the symptoms of sleep apnea, may also lead to additional weight gain?

Abstracts of some related studies about weight and sleep apnea can be found below:

Obstructive sleep apnea: a cardiometabolic risk in obesity and the metabolic syndrome

The Metabolic Consequences of Sleep Deprivation

Which comes first, the weight gain or the sleep apnea, is the unanswered question, but can you afford to wait until this vicious cycle completes a few rounds to find out?

Is Napping Dangerous?

No, a nap in and of itself won’t kill you, at least not if it’s while you are on your couch. But according to a new study from England, those who nap long and often may see decreased life expectancy:

In the study, people ages 40 to 79 who napped daily, for less than an hour, were 14 percent more likely to die over a 13-year period, compared to those who did not nap. Longer naps were linked with a higher risk: people whose daily naps lasted an hour or more were 32 percent more likely to die over the study period.

Of course, persistent napping means you are not getting a solid night’s rest. Sleep apnea, an obstruction of the normal airway that results in intermittent breathing, may be the cause.

Surgical Sleep Solutions may be able to help – feel free to contact us for a confidential consultation.

Sleep Apnea Pilots? The FAA May Want You Tested.

Are you are licensed pilot with sleep issues? According to recent news, your body mass index (BMI) and neck circumference may come under scrutiny by the Federal Aviation Authority (FAA) in the near future in order to determine whether you have obstructive sleep apnea (OSA).

Here is the full report from the Malasian Sun:

The Federal Aviation Authority in the United States has called on medical examiners to determine whether a new draft guidance relating to pilots with sleep apnea is strong enough.

Aviation medical experts will be asked to determine whether pilots at risk for obstructive sleep apnea should undergo testing and treatment if necessary.

Read the rest of the article about sleep apnea pilots here.

Currently, the FAA is considering new regulations that would require pilots to be tested for sleep apnea based on their BMI and their neck circumference – two strong indicators of sleep apnea. These regulations are drawing criticism from some who say that testing would be expensive or a violation of pilot privacy. On the other hand, supporters of the new regulations argue that treating sleep apnea pilots would save lives and improve the industry.

Surgical Sleep Solutions for Sleep Apnea Pilots

If you are a pilot who isn’t sure if you have sleep issues, feel free to complete our self-assessment questionnaire. It’s freely available, and even we won’t see your results unless you want us to.

If  you are curious about our permanent surgical treatment for sleep apnea, please contact us today to schedule a consultation, speak with a doctor, or learn more about how you can leave your CPAP device behind and still get a restful night of sleep.

Hypertension Risk for Perimenopausal Women With Sleep Apnea

While men generally have a higher risk of developing sleep apnea, women are certainly not unaffected by the sleep disorder. In fact, millions of women across the United States suffer from obstructive sleep apnea, and many have never been diagnosed.

Recently, a new study conducted in Brazil found that perimenopausal women who suffer from moderate to severe obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) had a significantly higher risk of developing heart problems like hypertension and arterial stiffness. These women also had higher blood pressure and took more heart medicine than women who did not suffer from sleep apnea.

MedicalResearch.com interviewed Rodrigo Pinto Pedrosa, MD, PhD from the Sleep and Heart Laboratory at Pronto Socorro Cardiológico de Pernambuco, Brazil regarding his research and the resulting link between sleep apnea and hypertension in women:

Perimenopause is associated with increased cardiovascular risk. This study evaluated the association between obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) and arterial stiffness and hypertension in perimenopausal women. OSA (apnea-hypopnea index: ≥5 events/hour) and moderate/severe OSA (apnea-hypopnea index: ≥15 events/h) were diagnosed in 111 (40.1%) and 31 (11.1%) of women, respectively. Women with moderate/severe obstructive sleep apnea had a higher prevalence of hypertension, were prescribed more medications for hypertension, had higher awake blood pressure, nocturnal blood pressure, diastolic blood pressure, as well as higher arterial stiffness (pulse wave velocity: 11.5 [10.1 to 12.3] vs 9.5 [8.6 to 10.8] m/s, p<0.001) than women without obstructive sleep apnea, respectively.

In the past, scientists and doctors have established a link between hypertension and sleep apnea in men, but this is the first time researchers have found a similar correlation in women.

Surgical Solutions for Sleep Apnea

Both women and men have benefited from bimaxillary advancement – the surgical sleep apnea procedure that we specialize in at Surgical Sleep Solutions. To learn more about this treatment, and how it may improve your sleep as well as your overall health, don’t hesitate to contact us today.