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10.4 cr Indians may be suffering from obstructive sleep apnea: AIIMS study


HEALTH Special

New Delhi, Oct 8 : As obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) becomes a global health burden, a systematic review and meta-analysis of the prevalence of obstructive sleep apnea in Indian adults has revealed that approximately 104 million (10.4 crore) Indians of working age may be suffering from the disease.

According to the study done by researchers from the All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) New Delhi, about 11 per cent Indian adults suffer from OSA, with men at higher risk (13 per cent) compared to women (5 per cent). 

The study, published in the journal Sleep Medicine Reviews, said OSA is a common sleep disorder associated with “considerable morbidity”.

“However, there is an underrepresentation of data from India and other developing countries in global reviews of OSA prevalence. This systematic review and meta-analysis examined the prevalence of OSA in India,” said the team of researchers led by Dr Anant Mohan, professor and head of pulmonology department at AIIMS.

Other research team members from AIIMS New Delhi were Tejas Menon Suri, Tamoghna Ghosh, Saurabh Mittal, Vijay Hadda and Karan Madan.

The team searched MEDLINE, Embase, and Scopus databases for articles that reported the prevalence of OSA in the general Indian adult population using sleep studies. 

Eight studies were included, comprising 11,009 subjects with mean age ranging from 35.5 to 47.8 years and meta-analysis was performed using the random-effects model. 

Based on these findings, the study showed that approximately 104 million Indians of working age suffer from OSA, of whom 47 million have moderate-to-severe OSA. 

“This represents a major public health problem in India with important implications for the global burden of the disease,” the authors noted.

Considered a common yet serious medical condition, sleep apnea causes someone to stop breathing while asleep, which can result in disruptions in oxygen supply, lower sleep quality, and other health complications such as hypertension, cardiac disorder, stroke or cognitive disorder.  

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