How to diagnose possible sleep apnea by looking in the mirror?

53% of patients with sleep apnea had relaxed, rubbery upper eyelids, according to a new study published in The Ocular Surface. An association that scientists do not explain.

A recent study published in the journal The Ocular Surface confirms that there is an association between drooping eyelids and sleep apnea. The team of Dr. Charles Bouchard, an ophthalmologist and researcher at Loyola University (Chicago), reported that 53% of patients with sleep apnea had relaxed, rubbery upper eyelids. The most severe cases of sleep apnea were associated with the most prominent cases of drooping eyelids.

What is "droopy eyelids"?

When we talk about "drooping eyelids", we mention the "floppy eyelid syndrome", which is an abnormal loosening of the upper eyelids, with poor eye closure, dryness and diseases of the cornea (the anterior part of the eye). 'eye). The study included 35 patients, 32 of whom had sleep apnea. Ophthalmological examinations revealed that 17 of the 32 patients with sleep apnea (53%) also had drooping eyelids, assessed with a "laxometer".

"Ophthalmologists have a unique position to identify patients who may be suffering from obstructive sleep apnea and help address this public health problem," the authors conclude. The association between drooping eyelids and sleep apnea remains a mystery to scientists.

50,000 people suffer from sleep apnea in France

OSA occurs when the soft tissues of the throat collapse and obstruct the airways. This occurs continuously throughout the sleep cycle, and occlusion of the airways leads to a decrease in oxygen in the blood. The breathing pause, called apnea, can last from a few seconds to a few minutes. The brain then tells the body to wake up and breathe, which causes the body to gasp for air. Symptoms include noisy snoring, excessive daytime sleepiness, fatigue, cognition problems, or morning headaches. There are also medium- and long-term repercussions, mainly cardiovascular (hypertension, risk of heart attack, risk of stroke ...)

OSA affects approximately 50,000 people in France, 34% of whom are men and 17% women, but up to 80% of those affected are undiagnosed.

Video: Sleep Apnea: More Than Just a Bad Night's Sleep (December 2019).