The list of direct and indirect health consequences related to sleep apnea is extensive and include stroke, heart disease, diabetes, and liver disease. OSAaffects about 25 million adults and is potentially life-threatening. 80% of these people are undiagnosed and unaware that their overall health may be in danger. Undiagnosed and untreated sleep apnea not only takes a toll on one’s health and safety, but it also creates a financial burden for the individual.
An inclusive study conducted by global research firm Frost & Sullivan, which factored in economics, sleep medicine, productivity, mental health, and accidents estimated that sleep apnea directly and indirectly costed untreated adults nearly $150 billion ($6,366 per person) that include workplace and vehicular accidents, healthcare and medication. It also included habits such as tobacco, alcohol, sleeping pills, decreased quality of life, and stress that can lead to Heart Disease, Diabetes, Stroke and Asthma. Over 26 million adults are diagnosed with heart disease each year, and is the leading cause of death in the US costing an estimated $108.9 billion annually. In comparison, average annual costs for the diagnosis and treatment of OSA were less than half that at only $2,105 per person.
Fatigue and drowsiness have also been linked to transportation accidents and since drowsiness and OSA are correlated, individuals with OSA have higher motor vehicle accident rates, with a higher likelihood of personal injury. According to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) there were 1.1 million motor vehicle accidents in 2014.
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