Monday, March 9, 2009

Heavy Snoring is a Cause of Stroke

For those who may think that snoring is a joke, a scientific article published in the journal Sleep refutes that premise.

The article written by Lee et al is entitled Heavy Snoring as a Cause of Carotid Artery Atherosclerosis. Dr. Lee and the other authors state " Heavy snoring significantly increases the risk of carotid atherosclerosis, and the increase is independent of other risk factors including measures of nocturnal hypoxia and obstructive sleep apnea severity."

What this means is that heavy snoring increase the risk of building up plaque in the arteries that supply the brain increasing the likelihood of stroke. It also says that this risk is separate and apart from any risk caused by decrease in oxygen to the brain at night and how severe the sleep apnea is.

Dr. Lee went on to say "Considering the high prevalence of snoring into the community [included in the study], these findings have substantial public health implications for the prevention of carotid atherosclerosis and the prevention of stroke."

In other words, snoring is no joke - see a sleep specialist or a dentist who has received continuing education in sleep medicine.


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