Study Recommends Sleep Studies for Patients Considering Gastric Bypass

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

A new study in the journal Sleep and Breathing assessed the risk factors for the presence and severity of obstructive sleep apnea (OSA). Participants were severely obese patients being evaluated for gastric bypass surgery.

Sleep studies were performed in patients undergoing gastric bypass from January 2004 to January 2007. Sleep apnea was noted as present or absent. The OSA was graded from mild to severe according to the apnea hypopnea index (AHI). The AHI is the average number of pauses in breathing that occur per hour of sleep.

The researchers also recorded patient gender, age, weight, height, body mass index, neck circumference, and waist circumference.

A total of 132 patients were involved. Sleep study results indicated that 64 percent of patients had a confirmed diagnosis of OSA. The prevalence of moderate or severe sleep apnea was 71 percent in men and 31 percent in women

In OSA patients, body mass index, neck circumference, and age were higher than with obese patients without OSA. No differences were found in waist circumference between groups. Body mass index, age, and male gender were independent predictors of sleep apnea.

In the female group, age greater than 49 years was the only significant predictor of moderate or severe OSA. Results indicate that men and women more than 49 years of age have the greatest risk for OSA. The researchers recommend mandatory preoperative sleep studies for this group of severely obese patients.

Find out your risk for sleep apnea here.

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