Prevalence of Insomnia in Patients with Obstructive Sleep Apnea and Management of this Comorbidity
Objective: The comorbid relationship between insomnia and obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) has been demonstrated in a range of studies. Although more physicians are recognizing that combination therapy targeting both insomnia and OSA is necessary to improve physical function in patients diagnosed with OSA and insomnia, the appropriate management strategy for these patients remains unclear.
Method: In this review, we summarize some of the literature and report the prevalence of comorbidity of insomnia and OSA. We also discuss the management of these two disorders when they cooccur. A proposed clinical recommendation for an optimal treatment plan needs to be tested.
Result: The prevalence of comorbidity reported in previous studies varied widely from 7% up to 84%. Women presented more complaints of insomnia in OSA patients. Sleep maintenance insomnia was the most common subtype among patients with OSA. Comorbidity of insomnia and OSA was associated with increased severity of each condition and exacerbated numerous health consequences. Combination therapy that targeted both insomnia and OSA was necessary to improve physical function in these patients.
Conclusion: The prevalence of insomnia comorbidity with OSA was higher than originally estimated. The optimal treatment plan should be recommended case by case by considering the severity of OSA and the subtypes of insomnia. It is important to emphasize the need for interdisciplinary training for physicians who treat both types of the disorders.