Sleepy during daytime? Heart risk high!

Sleepy during daytime? Heart risk high!

The Sleep Heart Health Study [1] found that obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) with excessive daytime sleepiness triples the chance of heart failure and doubles the risk of a cardiovascular event.

The study evaluated data from over 1200 patients with OSA and an apnea-hypopnea index (AHI) of 15 or more events per hour.

Important symptom subtypes noted were as follows:

  1. Disturbed Sleep (12.2%)
  2. Minimally Symptomatic (32.6%)
  3. Excessively Sleepy (16.7%)
  4. Moderately Sleepy (38.5%)

Excessively Sleepy subtype was associated with over 3 times increased risk of prevalent heart failure. The same subtype was associated with increased risk of incident cardiovascular disease with hazard ratio 1.7-2.4. Compared to those without OSA (AHI less than 5), significantly increased risk of both prevalent and incident cardiovascular events were noted mostly in the Excessively Sleepy subtype.


  1. Mazzotti DR, Keenan BT, Lim DC, Gottlieb DJ, Kim J, Pack AI. Symptom Subtypes of Obstructive Sleep Apnea Predict Incidence of Cardiovascular Outcomes. Am J Respir Crit Care Med. 2019 Feb 15. doi: 10.1164/rccm.201808-1509OC. [Epub ahead of print]

Leave a Reply