Background: Obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) is often not diagnosed in patients presenting for surgical procedures thereby increasing the incidence of adverse perioperative course. Early diagnosis of this disease is important in modifying anesthetic management as well as utilizing specific means which may decrease the complications and improve the patient outcome.
Methods: Patients greater than eighteen years of age, ASA I-III scheduled for elective surgical procedures under anesthesia were randomly selected. Their demographic data, diagnosis and nature of surgery were noted in a semi-structured performa. They were then screened for the presence of OSA with the help of a STOP BANG questionnaire.
Results: This study included two hundred four patients randomly selected. Slight female predominance was seen in this sample (55.4%). Mean age of the subjects was 42.7 years (SD=15.08). 24.5% subjects were at high risk for OSA (STOP-BANG>3) with a male predominance (72% versus 37% in low risk group; X (2)=18.62; P<0.001). High risk OSA subjects had higher prevalence of cardiovascular risk factors (57% vs. 11.7% in low risk group; X (2)=33.35; P<0.001). Similarly, this group had a higher prevalence of asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) (14% versus 3.8% in low risk group; X (2)=6.54; P=0.03). Prevalence of diabetes mellitus (22%) and hypothyroidism (6%) was also higher in this group (5.2% and 1.9% in low risk group respectively; X (2)=15.42; P<0.001).
Conclusion: High degree of suspicion and knowledge of association of OSA and medical diseases may help in detection of such cases and decrease the rate of perioperative complications thus improving patients safety.
Keywords: Anaesthesia; STOP BANG; complication; obstructive sleep apnea.