Sleep disorder 'requires more than lifestyle changes'

Obese patients who suffer from sleep disorders may find that the condition is not eliminated by alterations to their lifestyle.

A study has suggested that sleep apnoea cannot be completely cured by exercising and having a healthy diet, although it does improve the quality of sleep to some degree.

Dr Maree Barnes, a senior research fellow at the Institute for Breathing and Sleep at Austin Hospital in Australia, tested 12 patients who had an average body mass index of 36.1 and found that additional therapy is needed to eliminate the sleeping disorder.

"Although there was some improvement in sleep disordered breathing, it was not seen in all patients and was not proportional to the degree of weight loss," explained Dr Barnes.

The average age of the patients tested was 42 years old.

Recent research at the Mayo Clinic in Portland, Oregon, indicated that surgery called uvopalatopharyngoplasty can be successful in treating sleep apnoea.

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Sleep disorder 'requires more than lifestyle changes'
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