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Am J Hypertens. 2001 Sep;14(9 Pt 1):887-92.

Sleep quality and blood pressure dipping in obstructive sleep apnea.

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Department of Medicine, University of California, San Diego 92103-8378, USA.



Obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) is associated with poor sleep quality and a high incidence of nondipping. The aim of this study was to determine the association of sleep quality and nocturnal blood pressure (BP) dipping in an OSA population.


A total of 44 untreated subjects with mild to severe OSA underwent overnight-attended polysomnography and 24-h ambulatory BP monitoring. Subjects were off antihypertensive medication. The percentage of slow wave sleep, percentage of time awake after sleep onset during the sleep period, sleep efficiency, and arousal index were chosen as measurements of sleep quality. Dipping was evaluated using the change in systolic BP, diastolic BP, and mean arterial pressure. Patients were classified as dippers and nondippers based on a nocturnal drop in mean arterial pressure > 10%. Differences between groups were evaluated by independent sample t tests. Pearson correlation and linear regression were used to evaluate the association of sleep quality and dipping.


There were no differences between dippers and nondippers with regard to body mass index, age, or respiratory disturbance index. A total of 84% were nondippers. No difference was found between dippers and nondippers in sleep quality. None of the sleep quality measures correlated with the measurements of dipping. In multiple regression analyses, the percentage of slow wave sleep and arousal index each independently predicted only a small percentage of the variance (approximately 10%) of nocturnal DBP dipping.


The prevalence of nondipping was very high in a population of untreated patients with mild to severe OSA. Nonetheless, sleep quality did not appear to be related to BP dipping.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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