-- Robert Preidt
FRIDAY, June 7 (HealthDay News) -- Sticking with a regular
bedtime helps people with sleep apnea stay with their continuous
positive airway pressure (CPAP) therapy, according to a new
CPAP -- which uses mild air pressure to keep airways open during
sleep -- is the first line of treatment for sleep apnea but is not
effective unless patients use it consistently, the Penn State
Their study looked at CPAP adherence among 97 adult sleep apnea
patients. Adherence was defined as using CPAP for at least four
hours per night. Patients whose bedtime was consistent within 45
minutes every night were much more likely to use CPAP for at least
four hours a night than those whose bedtimes varied by 65 minutes
For every 30-minute increase in bedtime variability, there was a
1.8-times greater chance that patients would not adhere to their
CPAP therapy, according to the study presented Wednesday at the
annual meeting of the Associated Professional Sleep Societies, in
After one month of treatment, patients whose bedtime varied by
75 minutes or more per night were 3.2 times more likely to use CPAP
less than four hours per night, the researchers found.
Because this study was presented at a medical meeting, the data
and conclusions should be viewed as preliminary until published in
a peer-reviewed journal.
"Unlike many other treatments, CPAP treatment adds new complexity to a person's daily routines," study co-author Amy Sawyer, an assistant professor of nursing, said in a Penn State news release. She added that CPAP is a learned behavior that needs to become a habit.
The next steps include determining ways to help sleep apnea
patients incorporate CPAP into their regular routine and to
identify other factors that might affect patients' adherence to
CPAP therapy, Sawyer said.
The U.S. National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute has more
continuous positive airway pressure therapy.
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