Sleep Apnea Linked with Diabetes, Endocrine Disorder

Published Online: Friday, October 1, 2004

New research recently presented at the 86th Annual Meeting of The Endocrine Society on 40 women with polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) showed that those with sleep apnea may be at more risk for developing diabetes. PCOS is a female endocrine disorder that affects as many as 5% to 10% of reproductive-aged women. Symptoms of this condition, which ups a woman's risk of developing diabetes and cardiovascular disease, include excess hair growth, irregular menstruation, and central body obesity.

Researcher Esra Tasali, MD, concluded, "Sleep apnea appears to increase the incidence of hyperinsulinemia [abnormally high levels of insulin in an individual's blood] in women with PCOS. These findings indicate that women with PCOS who suffer from sleep apnea should be closely monitored for the development of diabetes."

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