Background: Several studies have analysed adherence to continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) therapy but little is known on the effects of age and gender.
Methods: Data from 4281 patients with obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) treated with CPAP (S8, ResMed, Sydney, Australia) were analysed, including apnea-hypopnea index (AHI), mask pressure, leakage, period of use (hours of use/night), and efficiency (days of use/total days). Patterns of use and treatment efficacy were compared between different age groups and genders.
Results: Average numbers of days used per week (range of the subgroups 5.8±1.6 to 6.3±1.2 days/week) and period of use (range 363±88 to 395±120 min) increased with age. Residual AHI(CPAP) (range 4.8±3.4 to 11.1±9.0/h), leakage (range 0.09±0.11 to 0.27±0.32l/s) increased significantly with age. Males had statistically significantly higher average hours of use (377±94 vs. 370±96 min), AHI(CPAP) (6.4±4.9 vs. 5.4±4.5/h), mask pressure (8.8±2.0 vs. 8.4±1.9 cm H(2)O), and leakage (0.13±0.16 vs. 0.11±0.15l/s) than females.
Conclusion: Adherence to therapy is high and therapeutic efficacy is excellent in long-term CPAP users. Adherence is both age- and gender-dependent, but the differences are small and not clinically relevant.
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