Respiratory health

Obstructive Sleep Apnea - a Frequent Undiagnosed Condition

Written by
Dr. Sagar Ramesh Makode
and medically reviewed by Dr. Sneha Kannan

Published on Mar 06, 2017 and last reviewed on Jun 08, 2019   -  1 min read



This article discusses the information regarding the symptoms, diagnostic test, and management of obstructive sleep apnea in brief.

Obstructive Sleep Apnea - a Frequent Undiagnosed Condition

Do you have any symptoms like snoring, interrupted sleep, unrefreshed sleep, morning headaches, daytime sleepiness, etc? Are you obese with a short and wide neck? If yes, then you may have obstructive sleep apnea, which is frequently an undiagnosed condition and has multiple adverse effects on our body.

Obstructive Sleep Apnea:

OSA is a condition characterized by obstruction of upper airway especially during sleep due to lax airway and narrowing of airway due to obesity.

Symptoms and Causes:

Obstruction of upper airway leads to temporary stoppage of respiration, increased sympathetic drive and increased pulse rate and blood pressure. It will lead to multiple harmful effects like the symptoms which are mentioned above, increased risk of stroke, heart attack and lungs problem like pulmonary hypertension. So, it is necessary to adequately investigate through ENT examination if you have any symptoms of nasal stuffiness and recurrent tonsillitis to rule out nasal causes of obstruction. Sometimes, thyroid problem will cause obstruction. Altered lipid profile and sugar HbA1c that is, dyslipidemia and diabetes are the frequently associated problems. Vitamin D deficiency is also responsible.

Diagnostic Test:

Polysomnography, which is a sleep study to confirm the diagnosis and extent of the disease.


  • The first step is weight reduction. You need to have a low-fat and a low-calorie diet to lose weight. A cure for this particular disease is weight reduction. So, healthy lifestyle including both healthy diet and regular exercises is the central goal in the management of OSA.
  • Secondly, CPAP (continuous positive airway pressure) is a mask device which provides pressure during inspiration and expiration during sleep in order keep your airways patent and avoid OSA.
  • Also, regular exercise is vital. Chest physiotherapy and yoga will be helpful.
  • For an in-person consultation, one needs to visit sleep specialist or pulmonologist.

To know more about OSA, consult an obstructive sleep apnea specialist online -->

Last reviewed at:
08 Jun 2019  -  1 min read


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