Effects Of Sleep Apnea Untreated

Sleep apnea research The HeartBEAT Study Susan Redline

I'm Susan Redline. I'm from Harvard Medical School and I lead the HeartBEAT study. And HeartBEAT stands for Heart Biomarkers in Apnea Treatment Study. And what this study is is the first ever controlled, randomized study comparing treatment outcomes in patients with sleep apnea. And very specifically we've identified using prior research that sleep apnea and heart disease are highly correlated. And it appears that sleep apnea increases your risk for heart disease. What we didn't know before the study

is whether treatment of sleep apnea might reduce your heart disease risk factors. And furthermore we also didn't know what might be the best treatment. Because of the funding opportunity we were able to for the very first time move our questions out of a typical sleep laboratory, where we know patients have sleep disorders, into cardiology practices, and pilot and refine an approach for screening and diagnosing new cases of sleep apnea and heart disease.

Already we analyzed our crosssectional data and we saw for example that sleep apnics— that the severity of sleep apnea correlated or was associated with how high your blood pressure went up at night during sleep. So one of the things we are going to be looking for is whether treatment with CPAP or with oxygen reduces not only your daytime blood pressure but your average blood pressure over a 24hour period, including that period at night when many heart attacks and strokes occur.

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