font size

Sleep Apnea (cont.)

Medical Author:
Medical Editor:

Why is it important to treat obstructive sleep apnea?

When a person with obstructive sleep apnea considers all the options for treatment, he or she may be tempted to not choose any of them. The masks and dental appliances have to be worn every night and the surgeries are painful and have no guarantee that they will be successful. When considering the consequences of all the treatments, however, it is important to remember that there are consequences of not receiving treatment.

It is estimated that only a small percentage of patients with obstructive sleep apnea are being treated. Some of the remaining people with obstructive sleep apnea know that they have a problem, but they choose not to pursue treatment. People with obstructive sleep apnea may have a right to accept the risks to their health that refusing treatment poses; however, when they drive they put everyone else at risk as well. People who refuse treatment for their obstructive sleep apnea should be reported to the DMV, which often will suspend their driver's licenses. Untreated obstructive sleep apnea also increases the risk of:

  • heart attacks,
  • strokes,
  • high blood pressure,
  • decreased productivity at work,
  • decreased attentiveness at home, and
  • sudden death.

If one thinks that they or someone they know may have obstructive sleep apnea, they should discuss their symptoms with the doctor as soon as possible.

Medically reviewed by Martin E Zipser, MD; American board of Surgery

Previous contributing author: Andrew Verneuil, MD

REFERENCE:

Downey III, Ralph, et al., "Obstructive Sleep Apnea." Medscape. 18 Sept. 2012.


Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 8/27/2014

Patient Comments

Viewers share their comments

Sleep Apnea - Effective Treatments Question: What kinds of treatments have been effective for your sleep apnea?
Sleep Apnea - Symptoms Question: What were your sleep apnea symptoms?
Sleep Apnea - Experience Question: Were you or your partner diagnosed with sleep apnea? Please share your experience.
Source: MedicineNet.com
http://www.medicinenet.com/sleep_apnea/article.htm

Sleep Disorders

Get tips for better sleep.

Sleep Apnea Related Articles
advertisement
advertisement
Use Pill Finder Find it Now See Interactions

Pill Identifier on RxList

  • quick, easy,
    pill identification

Find a Local Pharmacy

  • including 24 hour, pharmacies

Interaction Checker

  • Check potential drug interactions
Search the Medical Dictionary for Health Definitions & Medical Abbreviations