Obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) is linked to a variety of Cardiovascular Diseases (CVD) conditions, including hypertension, heart failure, coronary artery disease, pulmonary hypertension, atrial fibrillation, and stroke. Unfortunately, most occurrences of OSA in the United States go unnoticed and untreated, which means patients may be affected by this comorbid disorder.
To address this health-care issue and lower the risk of CV death, a multidisciplinary team approach is needed.
Cardiologists have a unique opportunity to boost OSA screening and diagnosis, putting patients on a treatment route that can improve their overall health, well-being, and quality of life.
The American Heart Association issued a scientific statement in June 2021 recommending that patients with resistant/poorly managed hypertension, pulmonary hypertension, and recurrent AF after cardioversion or ablation be screened for OSA.
The American Academy of Sleep Medicine (AASM) has launched a first-of-its-kind Specialty Practice Accreditation program for cardiology practices that test and manage patients at high risk for sleep apnea to help them recognize OSA and increase patient access to sleep apnea care.
Each year, untreated OSA costs the United States over $150 billion in comorbid diseases, motor vehicle accidents, workplace mishaps, and lost productivity.
Because many patients with CVD also have OSA, forming an interdisciplinary alliance between cardiologists and sleep medicine professionals can help to expedite and improve patient access to sleep therapy.
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