April 23, 2007:
sleep apnea sufferers who use Resmed CPAP devices:
ResMed has announced a worldwide recall of
300,000 of its early production S8 flow generators. In S8
devices manufactured between July 2004 and May 15, 2006,
there is a remote potential for a short circuit in the power
ResMed plans to work with its
distribution partners globally to provide a replacement
device to patients who have an affected S8 flow generator.
November 22, 2006:
Researchers in Georgia, USA, took 100 overweight
children, aged 7 to 11, and put them on various exercise
After about three months of vigorous
after-school physical activity, the number of children who
tested positive for sleep-disordered breathing, including
snoring, was cut in half. In children who exercised the
longest, the number was reduced by 80 percent.
Interestingly, the children did not necessarily lose weight
-- the improvement seemed related to fitness, more muscle
and less fat.
October 19, 2006: Some stats from
north of the 49th parallel, courtesy of a survey of married
Ipsos Reid: 63% say that "at times, their
partner's snoring keeps them awake." More than a third say
they'd rather share their bed with a good sleeper than a
good lover, and may sleep in a separate room, with obvious
negative impact on the intimacy of the marriage.
September 18, 2006:
Life is unfair for apneics, isn't it? Those with obstructive
sleep apnea are known to be more likely to suffer from
erectile dysfunction. But if you take Viagra, it'll
only make your apnea worse, according to a study published
Archives of Internal Medicine. So your partner has a
choice...more sex or more snoring.
September 1, 2006:
Mayo Clinic researchers have proposed a new
category of sleep apnea they call "complex" -- referring to
patients who appear to have obstructive sleep apnea, but
unlike typical OSA sufferers, do not respond to
CPAP, but soon show
symptoms of central sleep apnea. About 15% of apnea
sufferers treated at Mayo over the course of one month fell
into this category.
August 15, 2006.
Young women with asthma are twice as likely to have symptoms
of obstructive sleep apnea as those without asthma,
according to a study published in
the August volume of
Annals of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology. The survey found that
about 21 percent of 30-something women with asthma
experienced habitual snoring, the primary symptom of apnea.
August 12, 2006.
A woman in Britain has
been jailed for two years for stabbing her husband and
pouring bleach down his throat to stop him snoring. The
report does not say if this cured his snoring.
What sort of journalism is that?
June 22, 2006.
Add another downside to sleep apnea: erectile dysfunction
Researchers at Cornell have found that of 30 men
with the breathing disorder sleep apnea, 24 (80 percent)
also had symptoms of ED. The authors speculate that the
erections men naturally have during deep REM sleep help
preserve normal erectile function. Men with sleep apnea,
however, have continuous sleep interruptions and spend less
time in the REM stages.
June 1, 2006.
If you assume that those
who suffer from sleep apnea are 10% less productive than
non-apneic workers, the loss of productivity (adding in a
few other equally broad-brush assumptions) could cost the US
almost $90 billion a year, says a Philadelphia physician.
survey of 5600 patients found that over 48% had
trouble concentrating at work and got tired easily. It was
also noted that these patients had difficulties in problem
solving and performing complex tasks. Regardless of the
validity of the $90b estimate, it is clear that even mild
sleep apnea can impair your ability to perform well on the
job and should be treated.
May 23, 2006.
Older men who are heavy
snorers are more likely to be unhappy with their sex lives,
according to a survey reported at the
American Thoracic Society International Conference.
These men -- median age 64 -- were not significantly
different from non-snorers in problems relating to sexual
drive or erectile function, leading one to wonder whether
heavy snoring is affecting the spouse and that this, in
turn, affects a good sexual relationship.
April 13, 2006. A
survey of 6800 Swedish women shows they are
pretty much like men... they snore more as they get older,
heavier and drink and smoke more.
8% of the women reported being
habitual snorers. That percentage peaked at 14% among women
in their 50s.
April 1, 2006: The
Australian Consumers Association has reviewed
manufacturer's claims for the effectiveness of their
anti-snoring products and concludes that for the most part,
the evidence is pretty weak that they can consistently cure
snoring. They looked as pillows, strips, aromatherapy
and nasal devices. We are not too surprised: it's
clear that no single remedy is widely effective -- there are
too many reasons that people snore. That's why we suggest
users try a range of remedies to find one that works for
them. And we agree with the ACA that "lifestyle
changes seem to be the most successful and safest
March 24, 2006: Infants who snore
have lower scores on tests designed to show mental
development, according to a study this month in
Pediatrics. None of the infants showed
signs of sleep apnea, so the researchers conclude that
snoring by itself is a problem (which may wake the child up,
disrupting sleep). The study suggests that children who
snore are more likely to live in a home where one or more of
the parents smoke.
March 7, 2006: Looking for an ultra
high-tech solution to snoring? The
Institute for Biomedical Engineering at the
University of Southern California (USC) has applied for a patent for a snoring cure involving
injectable neuromuscular stimulators. The theory is
simple: you snore when your soft palate relaxes during
sleep. If you could maintain muscle tone at night, you may
not snore. So, the patent describes a somewhat
alarming method to make your muscles near your soft palate
contract whenever you snore. The treatment will
involve injecting small coils into the roof of your mouth.
Then near your bed will be a larger coil connected to
electricity (a battery?) and a microphone. When you
snore, the microphone will trigger the coil to pulse, in
turn charging the muscle coils, making the muscles contract.
Pretty clever, eh? To our knowledge this solution is not
February 28, 2006: Restore Medical
(a sponsor of this web site) has bolstered its claims for
the Pillar procedure as a remedy for both snoring and
obstructive sleep apnea. A
new study found that 88 percent of
patients undergoing the procedure had reductions in their
snoring, and nearly two-thirds also reported feeling less
sleepy during the day. About a third saw reduced sleep
apnea. The company hopes that
these results will encourage insurance companies to cover
the procedure, which typically costs $1,500-2,000 as an
February 27, 2006: NBC's Today
show has a special report on sleep disorders this week.
Some of the segments are
online. Check out the
informative animation on the causes of snoring.
February 21, 2006: A
University of Edinburgh study of 100 women who
were at least six months pregnant and 100 non-pregnant women
showed that women in the last trimester of pregnancy are
more than twice as likely to snore as their non-pregnant
counterparts (41% versus 17%). More seriously, 14% of the
pregnant women also developed sleep apnea, which can raise
blood pressure and lead to
The increased snoring, as you'd guess, is related to weight
gain and narrowing of the airways. Within three months of
delivery, the pregnant women became non-snorers again.
Any thinking adult has a healthy skeptism of statistics, but we need them nonetheless to make sense of our world. Our snoring statistics page collects research as well as the data points commonly used by the experts and would-be experts.
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