osa: Don’t Ignore Signs Of Sleep Apnea: Experts | Hyderabad News

HYDERABAD: Even though obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) has been associated with sudden cardiac arrest and cause for heart issues, the awareness about the disease is very low.
In fact, snoring, which is the key symptom of this silent killer disease continues to be ignored and rather thought of as a good thing. This often leads to people not seeking medical help when required. OSA is a condition characterized by complete/partial obstruction of the upper airway that disrupts normal sleep patterns.
As a result, a majority of the cases of OSA are detected when patients turn up with other issues. Experts report seeing up to 50 cases each month, majority being a chance discovery.
“We see less than five people coming to us complaining of heavy snoring being a problem, that too it happens when the sleep partner is disturbed by the snoring. In most other cases, we find out when we ask other questions. A patient may come with other issues like sleeplessness, dizziness, not feeling refreshed after sleeping, hypertension etc. OSA causes reduced supply of oxygen to the body and if this happens each night even for 10 minutes, it can lead to organ damage in the long term run,” said Dr Vyshnavi Bommakanti, consultant ENT surgeon and otorhinolaryngologist, Gleneagles hospital, adding that in some cases the cause is the abnormal bone structure around the nose. She sees around 50 cases per month.
Meanwhile, obesity is one of the common factors seen in patients with OSA, experts say. The predominant symptoms of OSA are loud snoring at nights, choking episodes during sleep, cough at nights, twisting and turning in the bed and frequent awakening during sleep. “Day time symptoms are dullness and drowsiness, inability to concentrate, mood swings, weight gain, swelling of the legs, dozing off during the day. Most young and middle aged people are falling prey to early diabetes, early hypertension, brain stroke, heart arrhythmias, sexual dysfunction and obesity due to OSA. We see an average of 50-55 sleep studies a month,” said Gopi Krishna Yedlapati, consultant interventional pulmonologist, Yashoda Hospitals.

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