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Women with symptoms of sleep-disordered breathing are less likely to be diagnosed and treated for sleep apnea than men
Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Medicine and Pharmacy, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Medical Sciences, Lung- allergy- and sleep research.
Natl Univ Hosp Iceland, Dept Resp Med & Sleep, Reykjavik, Iceland.;Univ Iceland, Fac Med, Reykjavik, Iceland..
Umea Univ, Dept Surg & Petioperat Sci, Surg, Umea, Sweden..
Sahlgrens Univ Hosp, Dept Occupat & Environm Med, Gothenburg, Sweden..
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2017 (English)In: Sleep Medicine, ISSN 1389-9457, E-ISSN 1878-5506, Vol. 35, 17-22 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Background: Women are often underrepresented at sleep clinics evaluating sleep-disordered breathing (SDB). The aim of the present study was to analyze gender differences in sleep apnea diagnosis and treatment in men and women with similar symptoms of SDB.

Methods: Respiratory Health in Northern Europe (RHINE) provided information about snoring, excessive daytime sleepiness (EDS), BMI and somatic diseases at baseline (1999-2001) and follow-up (2010-2012) from 4962 men and 5892 women. At follow-up participants were asked whether they had a diagnosis of and/or treatment for sleep apnea.

Results: Among those with symptoms of SDB (snoring and EDS), more men than women had been given the diagnosis of sleep apnea (25% vs. 14%, p < 0.001), any treatment (17% vs. 11%, p = 0.05) and CPAP (6% vs. 3%, p = 0.04) at follow-up. Predictors of receiving treatment were age, BMI, SDB symptoms at baseline and weight gain, while female gender was related to a lower probability of receiving treatment (adj OR 0.3, 95% CI 0.3-0.5). In both genders, the symptoms of SDB increased the risk of developing hypertension (adj OR, 95% CI: 1.5, 1.2-1.8); and diabetes (1.5, 1.05-2.3), independent of age, BMI, smoking and weight gain.

Conclusions: Snoring females with daytime sleepiness may be under-diagnosed and under-treated for sleep apnea compared with males, despite running a similar risk of developing hypertension and diabetes.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
ELSEVIER SCIENCE BV , 2017. Vol. 35, 17-22 p.
Keyword [en]
Snoring, Sleepiness, Gender differences, Sleep apnea, CPAP
National Category
Medical and Health Sciences
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-330713DOI: 10.1016/j.sleep.2017.02.032ISI: 000404709200004PubMedID: 28619177OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-330713DiVA: diva2:1147992
Funder
Swedish Heart Lung Foundation
Available from: 2017-10-09 Created: 2017-10-09 Last updated: 2017-10-09Bibliographically approved

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