Dr. Tom Colletti, DHSc, MPAS, PA-C, DFAAPA
Obesity is quickly becoming a global health concern, even more so in the United States. If this trend continues, the prevalence of obesity-related conditions such as obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) will continue to rise.
The effects of sleep apnea on various disease states have been studied and continue to be uncovered. Systemic conditions such as hypertension, stroke, cardiomyopathy, diabetes, and myocardial infarction are associated with or exacerbated by sleep apnea. Ocular conditions such as floppy eyelid syndrome, central serous chorioretinopathy, glaucoma, non-arteritic ischemic optic neuropathy, retinal vein occlusion, and diabetic retinopathy may also have an association with OSA. The challenge is that sleep apnea often goes undiagnosed and, therefore, untreated. Once diagnosed, adherence to treatment is also a challenge.
Routine eye exam findings have often led clinicians to discover undiagnosed sleep apnea. It is important for patients known to have sleep apnea to have regular eye examinations to identify any ocular condition that may be impacted by OSA.
Duchin D. Obstructive Sleep Apnea and Ocular Disorders. University of Lynchburg DMSc Doctoral Project Assignment Repository. 2022; 4(4).
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