Heart Beat: October 2010
Men with severe obstructive sleep apnea have a nearly 60 percent increased risk of developing heart failure, according to a study of more than 4,400 men and women age 40 and older. The study, published online July 12 in Circulation, found a much lower risk of heart failure among women, but researchers suggest that part of the reason may lie in the fact that women tend to be diagnosed with sleep apnea far less frequently than men and that they tend to be older when they develop the condition. Sleep apnea is a condition in which a person experiences pauses in breathing during the night, which puts a strain on the heart and brain and is associated with higher risks of stroke and heart attack. Symptoms of sleep apnea include daytime sleepiness, snoring and sweating at night.