3 Types of Sleep Apnea

Sleep apnea is a common sleep disorder that affects millions of people worldwide. It is characterized by episodes of interrupted breathing during sleep, which can lead to snoring, daytime fatigue, and other health problems. In this article, we’ll explore three types of sleep apnea and their unique characteristics.

1. Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA)

Obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) is the most common type of sleep apnea. It occurs when the muscles in the back of the throat fail to keep the airway open during sleep, leading to repeated episodes of breathing pauses. OSA is often associated with loud snoring, gasping for air during sleep, and daytime fatigue. Risk factors for OSA include being overweight, having a large neck size, and having a family history of sleep apnea.

2. Central Sleep Apnea (CSA)

Central sleep apnea (CSA) is a less common type of sleep apnea that occurs when the brain fails to send proper signals to the muscles that control breathing during sleep. This leads to periods of interrupted breathing and can result in shortness of breath or difficulty breathing. CSA is often associated with medical conditions such as heart failure, stroke, or kidney failure.

3. Complex Sleep Apnea Syndrome (CompSA)

Complex sleep apnea syndrome (CompSA), also known as treatment-emergent central sleep apnea (TECSA), is a type of sleep apnea that occurs when a person with OSA develops central sleep apnea after treatment with continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) therapy. CompSA is often characterized by a mixture of obstructive and central sleep apnea events during sleep.

In conclusion, sleep apnea is a common sleep disorder that can have serious health consequences if left untreated. When seeking treatment for sleep apnea, it is important to understand the type of sleep apnea present, as this can impact the recommended treatment approach. If you suspect you may have sleep apnea, speak with your healthcare provider for a proper diagnosis and treatment plan.