Sleep Apnea
.  What is It?
.  .  Two Types
.  .  Obstructive
.  .  Central
.  .  Snoring
.  Common
.  Serious
.  Treatable
.  Under-Diagnosed
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Next PagePrevious Page Two Types of Sleep Apnea

Why should airflow into the lungs drop during sleep? There are two main causes. These causes define the two major types of sleep apnea:

Type of Sleep Apnea The Problem Site of Problem Major Causes
Obstructive Airflow is blocked.
Air cannot enter lungs.
Airway Weight (adults).
Tonsils (children).
Jaw anatomy.
Central The drive to breathe is reduced. Brain Heart failure.

A person with sleep apnea usually has one of the two types predominate. A third type of sleep apnea is "mixed sleep apnea" -- a combination of obstructive and central.

When people talk about "sleep apnea," they usually mean obstructive sleep apnea (OSA). OSA is more common in the general population than central sleep apnea.

Snoring is related to OSA. About 70% of people with OSA will snore. About 25% of people who snore have OSA.

Next:   Details about  obstructive sleep apnea,
central sleep apnea,

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Last modified 15:30 Pacific on 21 Jun 2004.