ALLERGY, RESPIRATORY
Molecule in Skin May Link Eczema and Asthma
Air Quality Better in Northeast, Midwest
Childhood Food Allergies on the Rise
ALTERNATIVE MEDICINE
Insight on Herbals Eludes Doctors, Patients Alike
The Zen Way to Pain Relief
Hypnosis Cuts Hot Flashes for Breast Cancer Survivors
ANIMAL CARE
Beware of Dog Bites
'Comfort Dogs' Come to Emotional Rescue
Rest Easy. When It Comes to Swine Flu, Your Pet Is Safe
BONES & JOINTS
Backpack Safety Should Be on Back-to-School Lists
'Snowbirds' Beware the Climate Changes
Rheumatoid Arthritis May Harm Gums
CANCER
Selenium, Omega-3s May Stave Off Colorectal Cancer
Gene Screen May Predict Colon Cancer's Return
Bitter Melon Extract May Slow, Stop Breast Cancer
CAREGIVING
Babies Born in High Pollen Months at Wheezing Risk
More Than 60,000 Patients Risked Hepatitis Infections
Early Exercise Boosts Outcomes for ICU Patients
CIRCULATORY SYSTEM
Grapefruit-Heavy Diet Helped Spur Dangerous Clot
Health Tip: Are You Anemic?
High Blood Fat Levels Common in Americans
COSMETIC
What to Do If You Have Unsightly Veins
Contact Lenses Boost Kids' Self-Image
Gum Chewing May Cut Craving for Snacks
DENTAL, ORAL
Scientists Find Gene for Tooth Enamel
Biological Product Shows Promise Against Gum Disease
Laser Technology Spots Cavities Before They Start
DIABETES
Arthritis Hits More Than Half of Diabetics
Diabetes Linked to Cognitive Problems
Out-of-Control Blood Sugar May Affect Memory
DIET, NUTRITION
Oregano Shown to be the Most Powerful Culinary Herb
Breakfast Eggs Keep Folks on Diet
Eating Free Range
DISABILITIES
Review Finds Marijuana May Help MS Patients
Could Your Cell Phone Help Shield You From Alzheimer's?
ENVIRONMENTAL HEALTH
Population-Based Strategy Urged to Cut U.S. Obesity Rate
Arsenic in Drinking Water Raises Diabetes Risk
As Earth Warms, Lyme Disease Could Flourish
EYE CARE, VISION
Half of U.S. Adults Lack 20/20 Vision
Nearly 18 Million Will Have Macular Degeneration by 2050
Too Much Sun, Too Few Antioxidants Spell Eye Trouble
FITNESS
Fliers Can Keep Blood Clots at Bay
More Steps a Day Lead to Better Health
MRSA Infections Can Bug Fitness Buffs
GASTROINTESTINAL PROBLEMS
Bowel Prep Harder on Women Than Men
New Guidelines Issued for Management of IBS
Traditional Nonsurgical GERD Treatments Not Impressive
GENERAL HEALTH
Varicose Veins May Mask Larger Problem
Lose Weight, Sleep Apnea May Improve
Zen May Thicken Brain, Thwart Pain
HEAD & NECK
Zen May Thicken Brain, Thwart Pain
Many Children Will Outgrow Headaches
Ski Helmets Encouraged for All
HEALTH & TECHNOLOGY
Save Your Aging Brain, Try Surfing The Web
Subway Defibrillators Save Lives
Using Light Therapy to Silence Harmful Brain Activity
HEARING
Noise Hurts Men's Hearing More, Study Shows
Summer Sounds Can Lead to Hearing Loss
HEART & CARDIOVASCULAR
An Apple a Day May Help Keep Heart Disease Away
Potassium-Rich Foods May Cut Stroke, Heart Disease Risk
Review Confirms Links Between Diet, Heart Health
INFECTIOUS DISEASE
Viral Infection Might Trigger High Blood Pressure
Chinese 'Devil Dung' Plant Could Be a Swine Flu Fighter
Dry Weather Boosts Odds of Flu Outbreaks
INFERTILITY
Obesity May Affect Fertility in Young Womene
KID'S HEALTH
Guard Kids' Eyes Against Long-Term Sun Damage
Plastics Chemical Tied to Aggression in Young Girls
When It Comes to Toys, Shop Smart, Shop Safe
MEN'S HEALTH
Noise Hurts Men's Hearing More, Study Shows
The Dark Side of Vegetarianism
Eating Fast Until Full Triples Overweight Risk
MENTAL HEALTH
Eight Spiritual Universal Principles in the Art of Practice
Common Social Groups and Race, Seem to Help People Relate
Brain Scans Show How Humans 'Hear' Emotion
PAIN
'Cell Phone Elbow' -- A New Ill for the Wired Age
Acupuncture, Real or Fake, Eases Back Pain
Alleviating Rheumatoid Arthritis
PHYSICAL THERAPY
PREGNANCY
Before Conceiving, Take Folic Acid for One Full Year
Breast-Feeding Benefits Moms and Babies
Alternative Treatments May Boost IVF Success
SENIORS
High-Impact Activity May Be Good for Old Bones
Boost In Elderly Population Will Be Felt Worldwide
Save Your Aging Brain, Try Surfing The Web
SEXUAL HEALTH
SLEEP DISORDERS
Better Sleep, Grades Seem to Go Up
Daylight Savings: Not a Bright Time for All
Pay Attention to Signs That Say You're Too Fatigued to Drive
WOMEN'S HEALTH
For Women, Moderate Midlife Drinking Linked to Healthier Old Age
Pre-Pregnancy Weight Linked to Babies' Heart Problems
Acupuncture May Ease Depression During Pregnancy
Add your Article

Doctors Urged to Screen Diabetics for Sleep Apnea

By Karen Pallarito
HealthDay Reporter

THURSDAY, Jan. 8 (HealthDay News) -- Here's a wake-up call to the millions of American men and women with type 2 diabetes: Snoring at night or nodding off during the day may be symptoms of obstructive sleep apnea, a potentially life-threatening problem affecting one out of three diabetics.

Based on strong preliminary evidence linking the two disorders, global health experts are encouraging physicians to assess their diabetic patients for sleep apnea symptoms and to screen sleep apnea sufferers for metabolic disease. The recommendation comes from the International Diabetes Federation (IDF) Task Force on Epidemiology and Prevention.

"It is probably too early to see any concrete evidence of changes in practice, but there is little doubt that awareness of the importance of screening people with diabetes and people with sleep apnea for the other condition is rising," said Dr. Jonathan Shaw, associate professor at the International Diabetes Institute in Melbourne, Australia, and lead author of the IDF task force consensus statement, which was issued last June.

Sleep apnea occurs when a person's airway becomes blocked during sleep. It's usually caused by the collapse of soft tissue in the back of the throat during sleep. Between snores, breathing stops for a period of 10 seconds or longer, and this pattern repeats itself multiples times over the course of a night.

Not only does it deprive the person of a good night's sleep, but it may increase the risk for high blood pressure and heart disease, according to the IDF.

Obstructive sleep apnea affects just 2 percent of women and 4 percent of men in the general population, the IDF noted. But it's much more prevalent among diabetics.

In a recent report in the journal Endocrine Practice, researchers examined data from 279 men and woman with type 2 diabetes. Overall, 36 percent had obstructive sleep apnea.

Men with diabetes were particularly vulnerable. Below age 45, they had more than a one-third increased chance of developing sleep apnea, and that risk doubled above age 65. For women below 45, the chances of having sleep apnea were slim: between 5 percent and 8 percent. Females 65 and older, however, had a one-third increased chance of having the sleep disorder, the study found.

Interestingly, being heavier or taking more medicines were not predictors of sleep apnea. The only correlations were age and gender.

"It suggests that once you're diabetic, there's such a powerful disposition to obstructive sleep apnea that the other contributing variables are simply less important," said Dr. Daniel Einhorn, clinical professor of medicine at the University of California, San Diego, and a medical director at the Scripps Whittier Institute for Diabetes in La Jolla, Calif.

Diagnosing sleep apnea is critical, he noted, because treating the sleep disorder can make a huge difference in the patient's diabetes. "Successful treatment of sleep apnea has a greater impact to improve blood sugar than any single thing you can do in a diabetic," Einhorn said.

Previous research has also shown that people with mild to moderate sleep apnea were twice as likely to develop high blood pressure, compared to those without the sleep disorder. Those with severe sleep apnea were three times as likely to have high blood pressure, a risk factor for cardiovascular disease.

Still, experts say further research into the diabetes-sleep apnea connection is necessary.

"We need to understand the mechanisms involved, so we can derive better therapeutic and prevention approaches," said Dr. Paul Zimmet, professor and director of the International Diabetes Institute in Melbourne, Australia.

The most common treatment for obstructive sleep apnea is continuous positive airway pressure, or CPAP. Before sleep, the person places a mask over his or her nose or nose and mouth. It is connected by tubing to a CPAP machine that uses air pressure to keep the airway open, according to the U.S. National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute.

Typically, before insurers will pay for this therapy, the person's sleep disorder must be documented in a sleep lab study.

Einhorn is currently conducting a follow-up study to assess easier, less expensive and more readily available methods of diagnosing obstructive sleep apnea, such as the use of a portable at-home screening device.

"There's no way that you'll have large-scale screening if everyone has to go through an overnight study at a sleep lab," he said. "It's completely unaffordable."

More information

The International Diabetes Federation has more facts on sleep apnea and diabetes.



SOURCES: Jonathan Shaw, M.D., MRCP, FRACP, associate professor, International Diabetes Institute, Melbourne, Australia; Paul Zimmet, A.O., M.B., M.D., Ph.D., FRACP, FRCP, professor and director, International Diabetes Institute, Melbourne, Australia; Daniel Einhorn, M.D., FACP, FACE, clinical professor of medicine, University of California, San Diego, and medical director, Scripps Whittier Institute for Diabetes, La Jolla, Calif., and vice president, American Association of Clinical Endocrinologists, June 2008, International Diabetes Federation Task Force on Epidemiology and Prevention, IDF Consensus Statement on Sleep Apnea and Type 2 Diabetes; American Sleep Apnea Association

Last Updated: Jan. 08, 2009

Copyright 2009 ScoutNews, LLC. All rights reserved.

More articles at www.eholistic.com