In 2005, the estimated prevalence of hypertension in US adults was 74 million; associated costs for 2009 were estimated to be $73 billion.1 Sleep apnea is strongly associated, in a dose-dependent manner, with hypertension, independent of other risk factors.

Effects of Treatment

Treatment of sleep apnea has been shown to reduce blood pressure.

  • Effective treatment of sleep apnea with continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) leads to a significant reduction in diurnal and nocturnal blood pressure. Mean reduction was 10 mm Hg.5
  • In patients with refractory hypertension and sleep apnea, a single night of CPAP therapy resulted in reduced systolic blood pressure. After 2 months of CPAP use, significant reductions were observed in systolic and diastolic blood pressure.6
  • In patients using CPAP therapy, each 10-point drop in baseline AHI correlated with a 0.89 mm Hg drop in blood pressure.7
  • Adherence to CPAP therapy in hypertensive patients was shown to reduce blood pressure by 1.39 mm Hg for each hour of use.8

1 American Heart Association. Heart Disease and Stroke Statistics 2009 Update
2 Arzt M, et al. Am J Respir Crit Care Med 2005;172:1447-51
3 Peppard PE et al. New Engl J Med, 2000; 342: 1378-84
4 Logan AG, et al. J Hypertens 2001;19 :2271-7
5 Becker HF et al. Circulation 2003;107:68-73
6 Logan AG et al. Eur Resp J 2003;21:241-47
7 Bazzano LA et al. Hypertension 2007;50:417-23
8 Haentjens P et al. Arch Intern Med 2007;167:757-64