New study elicits positive results on two fronts for people with sleep apnea.
Continuous positive airway pressure, or CPAP, may not only improve blood pressure in sleep apnea patients, it may also improve their overall quality of life.
"We found that CPAP was significantly able to reduce the blood pressure in both hypertensive and resistant hypertensive patients," Dr. Harneet Walia said.
The team of researchers evaluated the effects of CPAP on more than 850 people with sleep apnea and hypertension.
Some participants had what is called "resistant hypertension."
It's defined as blood pressure that remains high despite the use of 3 or more anti-hypertensive medications, including a diuretic.
Results show there was a reduction in blood pressure in the study's participants.
There was also an improvement in the quality of life of most of the participants.
"We found that CPAP in this group or population, which is hypertension and resistant hypertension was able to significantly reduce the sleepiness scores, the depressive scores, and the fatigue scores," Dr. Walia said.
Getting a sleep apnea patient's blood pressure under control is important because high blood pressure can lead to many heart problems.
That's why she recommends talking to your doctor if you show any signs or symptoms of sleep apnea.