Background: There is an established relation between obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) and various cardiovascular consequences. Objectives: To study the relation between obstructive sleep apnea, hypertension and cardiac arrhythmias and to see the effect of treatment of sleep apnea on these associations. Methods: Sixteen subjects, 11 (68.7%) males and 5 (31.2%) females with mean age of 48.12+9.3 years were diagnosed to have OSA and concomitant hypertension, cardiac arrhythmias and atrioventricular blocks. The diagnosis of OSA was established on the basis of clinical picture, Epworth Sleepiness Scale and Polysomnography. Results: Hypertension was observed in all subjects. It was found to be associated with severe OSA having apnea hypopnea index (AHI) of 31.2+2.12 bearing high statistical significance (OR 1.98, p < 0.001). Various arrhythmias included ventricular premature complexes (50%), paroxysmal supraventricular tachycardia (12.5%), atrial fibrillation (25%), and atrioventricular block was found in 12.5% patients. Treatment with nocturnal continuous positive air pressure (CPAP) significantly improved hypertension and arrhythmias and completely reversed AV blocks, bearing high statistical significance. Conclusion: Obstructive sleep apnea bears a strong relation with hypertension, cardiac arrhythmias and AV blocks and treatmentalmost abolishes these illnesses. Large sample studies are needed to further substantiate these observations.
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Author Name: Nadeem Ahmad. Tufail Ahmad Sheikh. Nihida Akhter , and G.Hassan.
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Keywords: Obstructive sleep apnea hypertension cardiac arrhythmias atrioventricular blocks continuous positive airway pressure.