According to a new study published in the Journal of Clinical Sleep Medicine, men who receive treatment for obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) may subsequently reduce their blood pressure levels.
Researchers looked at how effective continuous positive airway pressure treatment (CPAP) was in more than 200 men diagnosed with OSA and either Type 2 diabetes or hypertension. They found that both systolic and diastolic blood pressure levels fell dramatically once they began using CPAP to help them sleep.
"All types of patients may benefit from this treatment, even those with other chronic medical conditions," said Bharati Prasad, M.D., the study's principal investigator. "It's important to now do a prospective study enrolling different types of patients with sleep apnea."
Healthcare professionals have long known the connection between OSA and hypertension, as well as other cardiovascular issues like heart disease. High blood pressure usually occurs as a result of patients not receiving treatment for sleep apnea because they were undiagnosed or the severity of their conditions were incorrectly assessed, according to the National Heart Lung and Blood Institute.