Arterial Blood Pressure Response to Transient Arousals From NREM Sleep in Nonapneic Snorers With Sleep Fragmentation*

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Study objectives

To assess the hemodynamic effects of graded arousals during nonrapid eye movement (NREM) sleep in patients with partial upper airway obstruction during sleep without obstructive sleep apnea/hypopnea, overnight beat-to-beat BP was recorded in six patients.


At the end of each nonapneic obstructive event, EEG responses were graded as follows: grade 2, grade 1, and grade 0 were defined as increased high-frequency EEG lasting >15 s, 3 to 15 s, and no EEG arousals according to the American Sleep Disorders Association, respectively.

Measurements and results

The following were observed during grade 0, 1, and 2 EEG patterns (mean +/- SD): systolic pressure increased by 7.1 +/- 1.5, 11.7 +/- 1.9, and 14.2 +/- 3.4 (p<0.005), respectively; diastolic pressure increased by 4.6 +/- 0.6, 6.7 +/- 1.7, and 9.4 +/- 3.0 (p<0.005), respectively; heart rate increased by 2.9 +/- 0.4, 3.9 +/- 2.2, and 8.6 +/- 4.6 (p<0.005), respectively.


We conclude that nonapneic-nonhypopneic obstructive events are followed by arterial systemic pressure increases whose magnitude varies with the grade of the arousal.

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