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CiteWeb id: 20090000060

CiteWeb score: 5717

DOI: 10.1056/NEJM200005113421901

CREENING studies in the United States, Europe, and Australia have shown that a substantial proportion of the adult population has mild-to-moderate sleep-disordered breathing, a condition characterized by repeated episodes of apnea and hypopnea during sleep. 1-6 Apnea and hypopnea cause temporary elevations in blood pressure in association with blood oxygen desaturation, arousal, and sympathetic activation and may cause elevated blood pressure during the daytime and, ultimately, sustained hypertension. 7 Recent reviews judged the epidemiologic evidence relating sleep-disordered breathing to hypertension to be inconclusive, but they noted that study designs were inappropriate, that there was inadequate control for confounding factors such as obesity, and that there was a dearth of prospective studies. 8,9 Since sleep-disordered breathing is prevalent and treatable and the morbidity and costs of hypertension are profound, a rigorous assessment of the relation between the two conditions remains a priority. We assessed the association between sleep-disordered breathing and hypertension in a prospective analysis of data from the Wisconsin Sleep Cohort Study. The Sleep Cohort Study is a population-based, longitudinal study of the natural history of sleep-disordered breathing in adults. Participants complete overnight sleep studies at four-year intervals. These studies include assessment of sleep-disordered breathing (by monitored polysomnography), blood pressure, and many potential confounding factors.

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