Obstructive Sleep Apnea Syndrome does not increase the cardiovascular
risk in a naïve population of southern Italy
Background Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA) is a worldwide increasing
syndrome, which, by promoting endothelial dysfunction, contributes to
extend the cardiovascular risk. We evaluated the cardiovascular risk in
a group of OSA patients. Methods A total of 185 OSA subjects (19 normal
weight, 57 overweight, 109 obeses), seen at the Ambulatory of Sleep
Disorders, during one year, entered the study. We assessed
anthropometric features, polysomnographic findings, cardiovascular risk
factors, smoking habit, Pulmonary Function Test, Arterial Blood Gas
Analysis, Epworth Questionnaire, and Charlson Co-morbidities Index
(CCI). Subjects were divided into three groups, according to their BMI:
individuals with BMI ≥30 Kg/m2 (Group 1 n=109, mean age 61 ± 1; 74.3 %
males), individuals with BMI ranging from 25.0 to 29.9 Kg/m2 defined as
overweight subjects (Group 2 n=57, mean age 58.8 ± 1.4; 77% males) and
subjects with a BMI ranging from 18.5 to 24.9 Kg/m2 defined normal
weight subjects (Group 3 n=19, mean age 54.2 ± 2.3; 64,2% males).
Results In the whole population, the percentage cardiovascular risk was
weakly related with BMI (r=0.33; P<0.001), but not with AHI.
The cardiovascular risk was strictly related to the obesity
(p<0.00002), while the Epworth Questionnaire score and the
Charlson Co-morbidity Index were respectively statistically higher in
the group of obese individuals (p=0.006, p=0.00002) than in the other 2
Groups. When AHI values were stratified in tertiles, the percentage
cardiovascular risk did not vary with increasing AHI values (Figure 2).
Conclusions Further studies are required to investigate the pivotal role
of inflammation due to obesity, and underlying increased cardiovascular
risk in OSA patients.