Standard Tests May Underestimate Severity of Sleep Apnea in Black Patients

Trending 1 week ago

By Cara Murez 

HealthDay Reporter

WEDNESDAY, May 24, 2023 (HealthDay News) -- When it comes to diagnosing slumber apnea, existent screening methods whitethorn put Black patients astatine a disadvantage, caller investigation suggests.

Obstructive slumber apnea (OSA) is simply a superior slumber upset characterized by disrupted breathing during sleep. An first screening instrumentality mightiness beryllium an overnight beat oximeter trial — a mini instrumentality clipped connected to a fingertip that measures humor oxygen levels.

Investigators began this study aft seeing investigation that beat oximeters utilized connected intensive attraction portion patients during nan COVID-19 pandemic mightiness beryllium little meticulous successful Black patients than successful achromatic patients.

“While tegument pigmentation seems to impact nan results of oximetry, we did not cognize whether nan aforesaid would beryllium existent during tests for OSA,” said study co-author Ali Azarbarzin, an adjunct professor of medicine astatine Harvard Medical School, successful Boston.

“We hypothesized that this would beryllium nan case,” Azarbarzin said successful a news merchandise from nan American Thoracic Society.

So, nan researchers examined nan results of almost 2,000 patients of varying races and ethnicities who did overnight location slumber studies.

The investigators compared participants’ mean alteration successful oxygen levels aft each breathing region utilizing instrumentality that included oximeters.

The squad recovered that Black participants had a smaller alteration successful oxygen saturation — humor oxygen level — for each breathing region compared to achromatic patients. This was existent aft accounting for different factors that tin power humor oxygen levels, including age, sex, assemblage wide scale (a measurement based connected weight and height) and smoking.

“Our findings propose that these measurement problems whitethorn lead to underestimation of nan severity of OSA successful Black individuals. However, whether this underestimation of oxygen drops should lead to important differences successful diagnosing and managing OSA successful Black and different individuals pinch acheronian tegument is unclear,” Azarbarzin said.

“Nonetheless, these findings item nan request to rigorously trial nan accuracy of oximeters crossed divers populations and besides to see whether factors different than nan oximeter’s characteristics could explicate differences successful oxygen patterns pinch breathing pauses,” he added.

The findings were scheduled for position Tuesday astatine nan yearly gathering of nan American Thoracic Society, successful Washington, D.C. Research presented astatine aesculapian meetings should beryllium considered preliminary until published successful a peer-reviewed journal.

More information

The Sleep Foundation has much connected obstructive slumber apnea.

SOURCE: American Thoracic Society, news release, May 23, 2023

Source Health