Neurological aspects of obstructive sleep apnea

Ann N Y Acad Sci. 2008 Oct:1142:44-57. doi: 10.1196/annals.1444.003.


Obstructive sleep apnea is often regarded as a structural disorder causing narrowing of the airway. This article reviews the neurological aspects of obstructive sleep apnea, including the upper airway reflex, cortical arousal thresholds, and motor function as they pertain to the pathophysiology of disease. We also discuss the relationship of obstructive sleep apnea to other neurological diseases.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Humans
  • Nervous System Diseases / physiopathology*
  • Psychomotor Performance / physiology
  • Reflex / physiology
  • Respiratory Mechanics / physiology
  • Respiratory Muscles / physiology
  • Sleep Apnea Syndromes / physiopathology*