If you have Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA) and are obese, there may actually be good news.
Obstructive Sleep Apnea is potentially serious and potentially fatal sleep disorder in which breathing stops and restarts several times while sleeping. Symptoms include, but are not limited to:
- Loud snoring
- Excessive daytime sleepiness
- Observed episodes of breathing cessation
- Waking with a dry mouth or sore throat
- Nighttime sweating
- Mood changes
This sleep disorder is caused when muscles at the back of the throat relax too much and prevent normal breathing. As the muscles relax the airway narrows or closes, sometimes for as long as ten to twenty seconds. During that time oxygen levels in the blood may be lower and carbon dioxide levels higher than usual. Your brain can sense the changes in your breathing and rouses the sufferer from sleep so that they can reopen the airway. For some, this can happen a few to hundreds of times each night.
Risk factors for obstructive sleep apnea can include:
- Excessive weight
- Narrow airway
- High blood pressure/hypertension
- Being male
- Chronic nasal congestion
- Family history of sleep apnea
Here comes the potential good news: in a study out of Barcelona, Spain which collected data over five years on patients who had vertical sleeve gastrectomy surgery, 100% of patients who used a CPAP machine for their obstructive sleep apnea were able to discontinue use of the machine. CPAP (continuous positive airway pressure) machines are mask-like devices that are put over the nose (and sometimes also the mouth) to deliver a steady stream of air pressure while OSA sufferers sleep. CPAP machines are one possible treatment for obstructive sleep apnea.
If you have Obstructive Sleep Apnea and are obese, your doctor may advise you to consider weight loss. It should be noted that not all of OSA sufferers are overweight or obese. If you have tried to lose weight and have been unsuccessful, bariatric surgery may be an option. If your BMI is over 35 and you have comorbidities such as sleep apnea, type 2 diabetes, and hypertension, learn more about gastric sleeve, gastric bypass, or lap band surgery at one of Dr. Shillingford’s free informational sessions. Call Dr. Shillingford’s office today at (561) 483-8840 to schedule your free session and start improving your health today.
Dr. Shillingford, MD, PA is a board certified surgeon specializing in advanced laparoscopic and weight loss surgery. He had performed over 4,000 surgical procedures, and as Medical Director for Northwest Medical Center’s Center of Excellence in Bariatric Surgery he performs gastric sleeve, gastric bypass, and gastric band procedures each week. Patients have pre and post surgery visits at his conveniently located Boca Raton, Florida office. Although many patients travel to Dr. Shillingford for their weight loss surgery, many others also come from nearby locales such as Miami, Fort Lauderdale, and Coral Springs.