Lynchburg Journal of Medical Science

Lynchburg Journal of Medical Science


Primary Care


Dr. Nancy Reid


Obstructive Sleep Apnea in Adults


Purpose: This review aims to increase physician assistant awareness of obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) in adults and its impact on morbidity and mortality. The article seeks to identify; the prevalence of OSA in society, the most common clinical presentations, associated anatomy, and pathophysiology. Its influence on medical conditions such as metabolic syndrome and resistant hypertension, diagnostic methods, and currently available treatment options.

Method: Conduct a systematic review of scientific, peer-reviewed articles and textbooks published within the previous five years using PubMed, Google Scholar, Access Medicine, Medline, and UpToDate.

Results: A literature search for scholarly articles using search criteria returned over 17,000 items, of which sixteen are referenced or cited for this article.

Conclusion: The purpose of this review was to examine the latest knowledge available on obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) in adults. Briefly discuss its anatomy and pathophysiology, clinical presentation, and association with comorbid medical conditions that significantly impact morbidity and mortality. Identify current guidelines for diagnostic testing methods and interpretation. Finally, the different treatment approaches available, and their indication are presented. Early identification in the primary care setting and prompt diagnosis and treatment can decrease all-cause morbidity and mortality associated with OSA.


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