Continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP), when used on a consistent basis for managing sleep apnea, may reduce a patient?s risk for cardiovascular disease.
Researchers from Greece measured serum cardiovascular risk factors at baseline and at 6 months after CPAP usage in 53 nonsmoking patients, newly diagnosed with sleep apnea.
Patients were classified based on CPAP compliance: good compliance (n=20), poor compliance (n=19), and refusal of CPAP (n=14). Patients with good CPAP compliance showed significant decreases in most cardiovascular risk factors.
Patients with poor compliance showed a decrease in one cardiovascular risk area, while the patients who refused CPAP experienced no significant changes. Researchers conclude that good CPAP compliance may have a beneficial effect on overall cardiovascular risk.
This study appears in the September issue of CHEST, the peer-reviewed journal of the American College of Chest Physicians.