Sleep Disorders and Stroke: Does Treatment of Obstructive Sleep Apnea Decrease Risk of Ischemic Stroke?

TitleSleep Disorders and Stroke: Does Treatment of Obstructive Sleep Apnea Decrease Risk of Ischemic Stroke?
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2019
AuthorsParasram M, Segal AZ
JournalCurr Treat Options Neurol
Date Published2019 Jun 24

PURPOSE OF REVIEW: This review aims to support obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) as a risk factor for ischemic stroke, review treatment strategies for OSA, provide a comprehensive review of clinical data on OSA treatment and ischemic stroke risk, and to critically assess if treatment of OSA decreases the risk of ischemic stroke and if treatment improves outcomes and subsequent ischemic stroke risk in post-stroke patients.

RECENT FINDINGS: Several observational studies, randomized controlled trials (RCTs), and meta-analyses have examined the risk of ischemic stroke and cardiovascular events in patients with OSA and have also examined continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) treatment in these patients. Observational studies have shown an increased risk of ischemic stroke in patients with untreated OSA when compared with patients treated with CPAP; however, results are not statistically significant. RCTs and meta-analyses have shown no significant ischemic stroke risk reduction in CPAP treated patients with OSA. Several studies have shown improved outcomes in post-stroke patients with OSA treated with CPAP; however, few data is available for subsequent ischemic stroke risk reduction. Further research is needed for surgical treatment of OSA and assessment of ischemic stroke risk. OSA is associated with increased risk of ischemic stroke, and OSA should be treated with the appropriate therapy. While the current data is promising, more studies are necessary to state whether treatment of OSA reduces ischemic stroke risk and subsequent ischemic stroke risk. A practical approach to the sleep disorder evaluation and treatment of patients with cerebrovascular disease is outlined.

Alternate JournalCurr Treat Options Neurol
PubMed ID31231783

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