Sleep apnea worsens heart disease, yet often untreated

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Health care experts urge increased awareness of obstructive sleep apnea among people with cardiovascular disease or risk factors such as high blood pressure, according to a new scientific statement from the American Heart Association, published today in Circulation.

Obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) occurs in 40% to 80% of people with cardiovascular disease, yet it is under-recognized and undertreated, according to the statement. OSA occurs when an upper airway obstruction causes repeated episodes of disrupted breathing during sleep. Symptoms include snoring, lapses in breathing, fragmented sleep and daytime sleepiness. In general, about 34% of middle-aged

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