A new study has revealed that sleep Disordered Breathing (SDB), which includes Obstructive Sleep apnea(OSA), may increase the risk of mental decline in older women. The study which involved 448 women with a mean age of 82.8 years who under went cognitive testing, polysomnography(Sleep study) and genetic analysis, found that women with SDB, are more likely to show cognitive impairments. The results also indicated a strong association with a gene APOE e4, which is considered a risk factor for Alzheimer’s disease as well as SDB. Based on the above findings, the results suggest that cognitive impairment may be caused by chronically low oxygen levels in OSA patients. Therefore more aggressive interventions for SDB in older women are recommended by clinicians in order to prevent mental decline.
J of The American Geriatric society vol 56(1) ; pp 45-50