The Link Between Diabetes and Sleep Apnea
Several studies have linked diabetes and sleep apnea. In one clinical test, 593 patients were evaluated for sleep apnea. Each patient spent a night in a sleep laboratory to undergo a sleep study, called polysomnography. The researchers followed these subjects for as long as six years and the results showed that the participants with sleep apnea had a greater risk of developing diabetes by more than two-and-half times compared to those without sleep apnea. Then the participants were divided into groups based on the severity of their sleep apnea. Those with the most severe sleep apnea showed a greater risk of developing diabetes.
What the Study Showed
Studies show that proper treatment of sleep apnea reduces blood sugar levels, which is essential to diabetics. In addition, there has been a recommendation that doctors screen patients with diabetes if their blood pressure is routinely equal to or exceeding 135/80 whether they are taking medication for that condition or not. It is a universal goal to identify, catch and treat diabetes as early as possible. Often time’s people go years before being diagnosed with diabetes.
Earlier Diabetes Testing
The sleep apnea connection can allow doctors to test for diabetes much sooner and begin treatment if the patient does in fact have diabetes. This allows for better management of the disease and can prevent other problems such as kidney failure and blindness.