DMD Could Be Related To Sleep Apnea

DMD Could Be Related To Sleep Apnea

For patients with Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy, or DMD, new research has emerged that persons suffering from this condition are at an elevated risk of developing obstructive sleep apnea (OSA). This news is especially concerning for children with Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy. Children make up most of the DMD cases in America, with an estimated 20,000 new cases of the illness diagnosed each year. Most cases are discovered between the ages of 3 and six years old.The research comes from a Saudi Arabian sleep study from King Abdulaziz University in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, and was presented at the American Association of Neuromuscular & Electrodiagnostic Medicine annual meeting, which recently took place in Nashville, TN. Patients with DND were also found to be more likely to snore, with 29 percent reporting snoring at least half the time. Other sleep-related symptoms include daytime sleepiness, morning headaches, and general difficulty breathing during both sleep and waking hours. The research highlights the importance of not just screening Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy for traditional sleep apnea symptoms, but for sleep apnea as well. If you suffer from DMD, it’s a good idea to pay attention to your sleep habits. Have someone monitor you for snoring, or for signs of sleep apnea.  Signs of sleep apnea include:

  • Snoring
  • Shortness of breath while sleeping
  • Stopping and restarting of breathing during sleep
  • Fatigue during the day
  • Depression and/or anxiety during the day
  • Cognitive impairment
  • Worsening of other conditions, such as diabetes, heart disease, high blood pressure, cancer, and Alzheimer’s Disease.

If you notice any of these symptoms, speak to your physician about conducting a sleep study.If you have obstructive sleep apnea but are not satisfied with your options in terms of treatment, Dr. Peterson offers solutions that can help. While many patients assigned traditional CPAP therapy are often unhappy with this type of solution because it can be awkward and uncomfortable, Dr. Peterson has solutions that can help. A mandibular orthotic device is one such solution. This device is custom designed to fit your individual mouth and prop the airway open as you sleep, allowing you to breathe naturally without the use of forced air. Most find these devices more comfortable than CPAP and are thus more inclined to use them. To learn more about mandibular devices, please contact Dr. Peterson for a consultation today.

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