CPAP Saves Lives of Patients with OSA and COPD

New research is showing that continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) could help people who suffer from both obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). Both types of patients exhibited benefits of CPAP therapy by expressing relieved symptoms, with decreased risk of death retrospectively.

In reviewing a study that was conducted over a three-year period, and included over 200 patients, it showed OSA and COPD sufferers who used CPAP every night have less than 8 percent risk of dying compared to those who don’t use the treatment. Those who used CPAP occasionally or seldomly still had a slightly higher survival rate than those who never used CPAP therapy. In this case, some use is better than no use at all. Even the researchers were surprised at the fact that any time logged using the treatment at night had a positive result.

The main cause of COPD, both chronic bronchitis and emphysema, in people is cigarette smoking. COPD cause an obstruction of airflow and restricts breathing. In the United States, chronic respiratory diseases, particularly COPD, is the third highest cause of death. In addition, OSA is relatively common. It affects as much as 7 percent of males and 5 percent of women. Obstructive sleep apnea consists of periods of time during sleep when all or part of the upper air path is blocked, even though the body continues to try to breathe.

CPAP is proving to be the best treatment option for those that suffer from OSA. It gives an ongoing flow of air through the airway by means of a mask. This airflow keeps that channel open that would otherwise be blocked. COPD sufferers, along with medications, receive benefits of CPAP therapy as much-needed oxygen is delivered throughout the body and keeps constricted airways open.

Even if CPAP users only gain a slight advantage in survival rate, it’s still worth it if it means more years to a life.