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Increasing evidence links cognitive-decline and Alzheimer's disease (AD) to various sleep disorders, including obstructive sleep apnea (OSA). With increasing age, there are substantial differences in OSA's prevalence, associated comorbidities and phenotypic presentation. An important question for sleep and AD researchers is whether OSA's heterogeneity results in varying cognitive-outcomes in older-adults compared to middle-aged adults. In this review, we systematically integrated research examining OSA and cognition, mild cognitive-impairment (MCI) and AD/AD biomarkers; including the effects of continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) treatment, particularly focusing on characterizing the heterogeneity of OSA and its cognitive-outcomes. Broadly, in middle-aged adults, OSA is often associated with mild impairment in attention, memory and executive function. In older-adults, OSA is not associated with any particular pattern of cognitive-impairment at cross-section; however, OSA is associated with the development of MCI or AD with symptomatic patients who have a higher likelihood of associated disturbed sleep/cognitive-impairment driving these findings. CPAP treatment may be effective in improving cognition in OSA patients with AD. Recent trends demonstrate links between OSA and AD-biomarkers of neurodegeneration across all age-groups. These distinct patterns provide the foundation for envisioning better characterization of OSA and the need for more sensitive/novel sleep-dependent cognitive assessments to assess OSA-related cognitive-impairment.
This article was published in the following journal.
Name: Sleep medicine reviews
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A condition associated with multiple episodes of sleep apnea which are distinguished from obstructive sleep apnea (SLEEP APNEA, OBSTRUCTIVE) by the complete cessation of efforts to breathe. This disorder is associated with dysfunction of central nervous system centers that regulate respiration. This condition may be idiopathic (primary) or associated with lower brain stem lesions; chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (LUNG DISEASES, OBSTRUCTIVE); HEART FAILURE, CONGESTIVE; medication effect; and other conditions. Sleep maintenance is impaired, resulting in daytime hypersomnolence. Primary central sleep apnea is frequently associated with obstructive sleep apnea. When both forms are present the condition is referred to as mixed sleep apnea (see SLEEP APNEA SYNDROMES). (Adams et al., Principles of Neurology, 6th ed, p395; Neurol Clin 1996;14(3):611-28)
Disorders characterized by multiple cessations of respirations during sleep that induce partial arousals and interfere with the maintenance of sleep. Sleep apnea syndromes are divided into central (see SLEEP APNEA, CENTRAL), obstructive (see SLEEP APNEA, OBSTRUCTIVE), and mixed central-obstructive types.
Dyssomnias (i.e., insomnias or hypersomnias) associated with dysfunction of internal sleep mechanisms or secondary to a sleep-related medical disorder (e.g., sleep apnea, post-traumatic sleep disorders, etc.). (From Thorpy, Sleep Disorders Medicine, 1994, p187)
A disorder characterized by recurrent apneas during sleep despite persistent respiratory efforts. It is due to upper airway obstruction. The respiratory pauses may induce HYPERCAPNIA or HYPOXIA. Cardiac arrhythmias and elevation of systemic and pulmonary arterial pressures may occur. Frequent partial arousals occur throughout sleep, resulting in relative SLEEP DEPRIVATION and daytime tiredness. Associated conditions include OBESITY; ACROMEGALY; MYXEDEMA; micrognathia; MYOTONIC DYSTROPHY; adenotonsilar dystrophy; and NEUROMUSCULAR DISEASES. (From Adams et al., Principles of Neurology, 6th ed, p395)
HYPOVENTILATION syndrome in very obese persons with excessive ADIPOSE TISSUE around the ABDOMEN and DIAPHRAGM. It is characterized by diminished to absent ventilatory chemoresponsiveness; chronic HYPOXIA; HYPERCAPNIA; POLYCYTHEMIA; and long periods of sleep during day and night (HYPERSOMNOLENCE). It is a condition often related to OBSTRUCTIVE SLEEP APNEA but can occur separately.
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Neurology - Central Nervous System (CNS)
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