Obstructive Sleep Apnoea Raises Risk of Sudden Cardiac Death, Mayo Clinic Finds

Sleep apnoea is not only a serious medical problem; it predisposes to illnesses such as hypertension, heart disease and stroke. This has been proven by a study published today in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology. According to this study, an estimated 12 million American adults have obstructive sleep apnoea, and many of them are undiagnosed, according to the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute (NHLBI).

This study involved 10,701 people who participated in sleep studies who were followed for an average of 5.3 years for incidence of sudden cardiac death. In that time, 142 patients died of sudden cardiac death. The most common predictors were an age of 60 or older, 20 or more apnoea episodes per hour of sleep, and an oxygen saturation below 78 percent during sleep. This only shows that if you have sleep apnoea, your risk of sudden death increases almost twofold, particularly if you stopped breathing more than 20 times per hour of sleep and if you had severe falls in oxygen saturation during sleep.

But what actually happens when we lose sleep? How to we develop heart disease?

It is said that when the body does not have enough oxygen in its tissues, the blood pressure goes up as a compensatory mechanism. If there is chronic elevation of blood pressure, the heart would have to work harder, leading to a heart attack. A heart attack results from an obstruction in the heart’s blood vessels so that an area of the myocardium does not get supplied with oxygen. This is called myocardial infarction, or in layman’s terms, a heart attack.

The research further said that people with sleep apnoea have a much higher risk of sudden cardiac death between midnight and 6 a.m., when people are typically asleep, while people without sleep apnoea die more often from sudden cardiac death between 6 a.m. and noon. So indeed it is possible that maybe sleep apnoea has triggered the heart attack.

This information is especially important for health professionals so that they will know who to screen. To read more about this study, click on this link:


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Somnowell Inventor - Visiting Professor Simon Ash FDS MSc MOrth BDS

Prof. Ash is the inventor of the highly successful SOMNOWELL Chrome device for snoring and sleep apnoea.

The Somnowell Chrome is made to exacting standards in the Somnowell laboratory under the supervision of Visiting Professor Simon Ash. Prof. Ash and his master technicians create each Somnowell Chrome device using their wealth of experience and expertise.

Prof. Ash works at the forefront of his profession. He is a Consultant and Specialist Orthodontist with over 30 years clinical experience, with a special interest in sleep related breathing disorders, TMJD, and bruxism. He currently works in Harley Street London and two private hospitals in London as part of a multi-disciplinary team managing snoring and sleep apnoea, and is Visiting Professor of Orthodontics at the BPP University.