A GP guide to comorbid insomnia and sleep apnoea
Insomnia and obstructive sleep apnoea often coexist - it's important to identify and treat both conditions to ensure positive outcomes
Need to know:
- Obstructive sleep apnoea (OSA) and insomnia often coexist — a comorbidity that is known as COMISA.
- Studies show a high overlap between the two conditions.
- Traditionally, the two conditions have been viewed as distinct entities; however, they may be interrelated.
- It is important to consider both in patients who present with sleep problems.
- Several symptoms are common to both conditions, including non-restorative sleep, frequent awakening and fatigue.
- All patients with insomnia should be screened for OSA, and insomnia should be considered in all patients diagnosed with OSA.
- COMISA is more challenging to treat than either disorder presenting alone, and therapy is generally guided by the presenting complaint and/or predominant component.
- GPs can play an important role in identifying this underrecognised comorbidity.
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