Sleep Apnea & Pregnancy

While obesity continues to be the most common factor in the well-being of women during pregnancy, a recent study found another factor that may also harm the developing fetus. Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA) was cited as a potential factor in women independent of their obesity.

The most common form of sleep apnea, OSA is the experience of repeated breathing stops and starts during sleep. This potentially serious sleep disorder most commonly affects middle-aged and older adults and those who are overweight.

The prevalence of OSA among pregnant women is 11-20% and is even higher among obese pregnant women. Other studies have confirmed the tie between OSA and pregnancy complications such as including gestational diabetes, hypertension, preeclampsia and other severe conditions. More research is needed but women who have OSA should be treated and monitored closely during pregnancy.

June 30, 2014