Format

Send to:

Choose Destination
See comment in PubMed Commons below
Expert Opin Investig Drugs. 2009 May;18(5):647-56. doi: 10.1517/13543780902877674 .

Pharmacological approaches to the treatment of obstructive sleep apnoea.

Author information

  • 1University Hospital of Zurich, Sleep Disorders Centre and Pulmonary Division, Raemistrasse 100, Zurich 8091, Switzerland. Malcolm.K@bluewin.ch

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Currently the treatment of choice for symptomatic obstructive sleep apnoea (OSA) is continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP). Some patients with OSA do not tolerate CPAP or have insufficiently severe symptoms to justify its use; for these patients, drug therapy would be a desirable potential therapeutic alternative.

OBJECTIVE:

To summarize the current evidence on the effectiveness of drug therapy in patients with OSA.

METHODS:

A systematic review of randomized controlled trials was performed to investigate the effects of drug therapy on OSA.

RESULTS/CONCLUSIONS:

Searches of bibliographical databases revealed 33 trials investigating the effects of 27 different drugs on OSA severity and/or symptoms. The mechanisms by which these drugs are supposed to improve OSA include, amongst others, an increase in tone of the upper airways, an increase in ventilatory drive, a reduction in airway resistance, and alterations in surface tension forces in the upper airway. In most of these studies there was no significant effect on OSA observed. However, there is evidence from a few small trials that some drugs, especially those thought to increase upper airway muscle tone, have the potential to reduce OSA severity; but further data from larger studies of adequate duration are needed.

PMID:
19388881
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
PubMed Commons home

PubMed Commons

0 comments
How to join PubMed Commons

    Supplemental Content

    Full text links

    Icon for Informa Healthcare
    Loading ...
    Write to the Help Desk