Obstructive Sleep Apnea: A Risk Factor for Type-2 Diabetes

Topics: Sleep Apnea, diabetes

Sleep apnea is a more serious condition than it appears to be. The loud snoring sound is not just a threat to a peaceful sleep but also to your physical health in the long run. The epidemiological rates of sleep apnea are increasing in number in adults especially in its mild to moderate forms. The prevalence has increased in the past 25 years due to increasing rates of other conditions like obesity. Apart from obesity type-2 diabetes is also highly associated with obstructive sleep apnea (OSA)1

Type-2 diabetes is a chronic health condition and it is becoming an increasing threat to life with higher prevalence rates with each passing year. According to WHO the cases of diabetes have risen from 108 million to 422 million between 1980-20142. While it is already a matter of concern, its association with OSA makes the situation even worse. Patients diagnosed with OSA live with a greater risk of developing type-2 diabetes or worsening the condition if they already have it. OSA tends to incite a state of severe insulin resistance, resulting in compensatory hyperinsulinemia thereby, increasing the requirement for higher doses of exogenous insulin. This condition eventually leads to the development of type-2 diabetes3.

Obstructive sleep apnea: a risk factor for type-2 diabetes

A recent study on the suspected relationship between OSA and diabetes found that snoring is independently associated with the increased risk of type-2 diabetes in males aged between 30-69 years and in females within the 40-65 years of age group. The prevalence of diabetes is found to be higher up to 15%-30% in OSA patients than people without OSA4

OSA, though a serious health risk is a treatable condition, and the benefits of the treatment also are seen on its co-morbid conditions too. Therefore, it is very important to seek timely treatment for your condition, to get relief in its associated conditions. Many studies have shown that CPAP treatment for OSA has a positive effect on insulin control and improved diabetic conditions5. The promising results surely give a ray of hope to diabetic patients, suffering from OSA.


Disclaimer: The facts and information contained in this article are obtained from reputed medical research organizations and do not necessarily reflect the opinions & beliefs of ResMed. The content here should not be taken as medical advice. The content is for informational purposes only and because each person is so unique, please consult a healthcare professional for any medical queries.

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