Influence of smoking on sleep and obstructive sleep apnea syndrome

Pneumologia. 2016 Jan-Mar;65(1):28-35.


The various ill effects that tobacco smoking has on health have been largely studied, particularly on vascular, neoplastic, and respiratory diseases. Lately, the discussion about the negative impact of cigarette smoking moved towards sleep medicine. Tobacco consumption has been associated with sleep disordered architecture, both during regular intake and after withdrawal. Its effects on sleep disordered breathing (SDB) and especially obstructive sleep apnea syndrome (OSAS) still remain a matter of debate. It is unclear whether smoking represents a risk factor for OSAS or whether smoking cessation has any beneficial effects on OSAS and its therapy. There seems to be a synergistic effect between smoking and OSAS, both causing an increase in cardiovascular morbidity. Future studies are needed in order to establish the strength of this association. We aim to review the literature regarding the consequences of smoking on sleep architecture and SDB, adding emphasis on OSAS clinical implications and treatment.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Evidence-Based Medicine
  • Humans
  • Risk Factors
  • Sleep / drug effects*
  • Sleep Apnea Syndromes / etiology
  • Sleep Apnea, Obstructive / etiology*
  • Smoking / adverse effects*
  • Smoking Cessation
  • Snoring / etiology
  • Tobacco Smoke Pollution / adverse effects*


  • Tobacco Smoke Pollution