Insulin resistance and sleep-disordered breathing in healthy humans

Am J Respir Crit Care Med. 1996 Jul;154(1):170-4. doi: 10.1164/ajrccm.154.1.8680675.


Fifty healthy, normotensive individuals (34 women) with a mean age of 44.3 +/- 13.2 yr and a mean body mass index of 27.1 +/- 5.4 kg/m2 were tested for the presence or absence of insulin resistance and sleep-disordered breathing. The hypothesis of this investigation was that insulin resistance is associated with sleep-disordered breathing. In vivo insulin action with determination of steady-state plasma glucose (SSPG) and insulin was measured using simultaneous intravenous infusion of somatostatin, glucose, and insulin via a Harvard pump. Determination of sleep-disordered breathing was performed through clinical assessment and portable nocturnal monitoring using a validated sleep apnea recorder. Individuals with > or = 10 hypoxic respiratory events per hour of sleep were significantly more insulin-resistant than subjects without sleep-breathing disorders. After adjusting the relationship between insulin resistance and sleep-disordered breathing for potential confounding variables, it was found that this relationship was entirely dependent on body mass.

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Blood Glucose / analysis
  • Body Weight
  • Cross-Sectional Studies
  • Female
  • Glucose / administration & dosage
  • Glucose / pharmacology
  • Humans
  • Infusions, Intravenous
  • Insulin / administration & dosage
  • Insulin / pharmacology
  • Insulin Resistance*
  • Male
  • Sleep Apnea Syndromes / metabolism*
  • Somatostatin / administration & dosage
  • Somatostatin / pharmacology


  • Blood Glucose
  • Insulin
  • Somatostatin
  • Glucose