MONDAY, Oct. 17, 2016 (HealthDay News) — Sleep apnea may boost the odds of developing two serious health complications following surgery.
So, finding out if you have the sleep disorder beforehand — and seeking treatment — could boost your odds for good recovery from surgery, researchers say.
The two post-op complications are blood clots in the veins and an irregular heartbeat called atrial fibrillation, according to two new studies.
These problems occurred more often among surgical patients who had not yet been diagnosed — and therefore weren’t treated — with sleep apnea.
Obstructive sleep apnea is characterized by repeated breathing disruptions during sleep. Symptoms include excessive daytime sleepiness, restless sleep and loud snoring — often with periods of silence followed by gasps.
More than half of surgery patients who have sleep apnea don’t know it, the authors of one new study said. Identifying these patients ahead of time might spare them serious post-op complications, the findings suggest.