Daily Health Headlines

For Those With Sleep Apnea, Maybe It's Time for a Driving Test

👤by Robert Preidt 0 comments 🕔Wednesday, September 7th, 2016

TUESDAY, Sept. 6, 2016 (HealthDay News) -- Erratic driving may be a problem for people with sleep apnea.

People with the sleep disorder were more likely to fail simulated driving tests than people without the disorder (a "control" group). Lane deviation, in particular, was a serious problem for those who failed the tests, a new study found.

"Worse lane position deviation is a marker of poor driving performance and this is significantly worse in [sleep apnea] patients who fail the simulator as compared to controls," wrote Dr. Akshay Dwarakanath and colleagues at St. James' University Hospital in Leeds, England.

Sleep apnea is characterized by periods of disrupted breathing throughout the night. This can lead to daytime sleepiness.

The study included 129 adults with untreated sleep apnea and 79 adults without the disorder. All completed a questionnaire about their driving and were tested on a driving simulator.

Compared to the control group, the sleep apnea patients were more likely to say they had a high risk of sleepiness while driving. They were also more likely to admit they've fallen asleep while driving.

In the driving simulator, sleep apnea patients were more likely to fail compared with people in the control group. Just 31 percent of the sleep apnea patients passed, compared to 53 percent of the others. Nearly half in both groups attained intermediate scores, the findings showed.

Lane deviation was much worse among participants who failed the driving simulator test, the researchers said.

It's known that people with untreated sleep apnea are two to six times more likely to get into a crash than those without the disorder, but it can be difficult to measure that risk. This study suggests that assessing lane deviation on a driving simulator may help determine if sleep apnea patients are at increased risk for a crash, according to the researchers.

The study results are scheduled for presentation Wednesday at a meeting of the European Respiratory Society in London. The research has not yet undergone peer review, and should be considered preliminary.

"Comparing with controls may be useful in advising patients whether they are at increased risk of an accident," the researchers said in a respiratory society news release. Defining a normal range is a step ahead towards developing an objective test in evaluating the risk of sleep apnea patients, they added.

Between 2 percent and 4 percent of the general population has sleep apnea, so there is an urgent need for objective tests to ensure the safety of drivers and other road users, the study authors said.

-- Robert Preidt

Article Credits / Source

Robert Preidt / HealthDay

Robert Preidt wrote this story for HealthDay. HealthDay provides up to the minute breaking health news. Click here to view this full article from HealthDay.

SOURCE: European Respiratory Society, news release, Sept. 6, 2016

View More Articles From Robert Preidt 🌎View Article Website

Sponsored Product

Lunar Sleep for $1.95

Lunar Sleep for $1.95

People who have trouble sleeping typically have low levels of melatonin, so melatonin supplements seem like a logical fix for insomnia. There is a high demand for sleep aids, especially in the U.S. The National Health Interview Survey done in 2002, and again in 2007, found 1.6 million US adults were using complementary and alternative sleep aids for insomnia. Lunar Sleep was a top choice. Use Promo Code: Sleep2014 and only pay $1.95 S&H.

Get Lunar Sleep for $1.95

More Sleep Articles

Health Tip: Getting Enough Sleep?

Health Tip: Getting Enough Sleep?0

(HealthDay News) -- Insufficient sleep is a big problem in today's hustle-and-bustle world, even for children. Here are red flags of too little sleep, courtesy of the National Sleep Foundation: Dragging oneself more than 15 minutes after ...

Sugary, Caffeinated Drinks Could Cost You Sleep

Sugary, Caffeinated Drinks Could Cost You Sleep0

THURSDAY, Nov. 10, 2016 (HealthDay News) -- People who get little sleep are likely to drink significantly more sugar-sweetened and caffeinated beverages, a new study finds. The findings suggest that improving sleep could help reduce people's ...

Smartphones May Hinder a Good Night's Sleep

Smartphones May Hinder a Good Night's Sleep0

WEDNESDAY, Nov. 9, 2016 (HealthDay News) -- If you're in need of a good night's sleep, it might be wise to give your smartphone a rest from time to time. New research suggests that the light from smartphones, especially before bedtime, may ...

Health Tip: When Sleep is Interrupted

Health Tip: When Sleep is Interrupted0

(HealthDay News) -- Babies and young children wake frequently, destroying parents' quest for a restful night's sleep. Here's what the National Sleep Foundation advises for weary parents: Split child care into shifts. Let one parent take the ...

Health Tip: Safer Sleep for Baby

Health Tip: Safer Sleep for Baby0

(HealthDay News) -- Exactly what do worried parents need to do to keep baby safer while the infant is asleep? The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends: Always put baby to sleep on the back, until baby turns a year old. If baby rolls ...

View More Sleep Articles


Write a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Our Mailing List

Subscribe to our mailing list to get the latest health news as it breaks!

Your information will not be shared with anyone!