Phenotypes of obstructive sleep apnea in the Hispanic Community Health Study/Study of Latinos

Sleep. 2021 Dec 10;44(12):zsab181. doi: 10.1093/sleep/zsab181.


Study objectives: Recent work on US Whites from clinical samples used obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) symptoms to generate phenotypes for individuals with moderate-severe OSA which suggested 3 to 5 symptom classes. However, it is unknown whether similar classes generalize to diverse Hispanics/Latino adults. Therefore, we sought to fill this gap by empirically deriving sleep phenotypes among a large sample of diverse Hispanics/Latinos.

Methods: We used data from The Hispanic Community Health Study/Study of Latinos (HCHS/SOL; 2008-2011), a prospective cohort study designed using a multisite multistage probability sample of adults 18-74 years old. The subpopulation of interest included participants with moderate-severe OSA symptoms (≥15 respiratory event index (REI) events per hour; n = 1,605). We performed latent class analysis for complex survey data using 15 common OSA symptoms (e.g. Epworth Sleepiness Scale) and 4 comorbidities to identify phenotype classes.

Results: Average age was 52.4 ± 13.9 years and 34.0% were female. Mean REI was 33.8 ± 22.5 events per hour. Fit statistics and clinical significance suggested that a three-class solution provided the best fit to the data. The three phenotypes were: (1) Minimally Symptomatic (47.7%), (2) Excessive sleepiness (37.1%), and (3) Disturbed Sleep (15.2%). Sensitivity models were consistent with the main proposed solution.

Conclusions: Derived sleep phenotypes among diverse Hispanic/Latinos were consistent with recent findings from the Sleep Apnea Global Interdisciplinary Consortium, but we found notable differences in class prevalence relative to Whites. Further research is needed to link derived sleep phenotypes to health comorbidities in diverse populations.

Keywords: Hispanics/Latinos; latent class analysis; obstructive sleep apnea; sleep phenotypes.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural

MeSH terms

  • Female
  • Hispanic or Latino
  • Humans
  • Phenotype
  • Prospective Studies
  • Public Health*
  • Sleep Apnea, Obstructive*