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Sleep Apnea, Not Enlarged Prostate, May Be Causing Men to Wake Up in the Night

BGU Research Supports the Hypothesis that Patients Thought to Have Nocturic Episodes (Waking-up from the Need to Void) Actually Wake from Apnea and THEN Decide to Urinate

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BEER-SHEVA, ISRAEL, March 14, 2011– Ben-Gurion University of the Negev (BGU) researchers have shown that a significant number of patients with benign prostate enlargement (BPE) may have Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA), which may be the reason for their night awakenings and urination.

This study compared men between the ages of 55 and 75 years-old, who were randomly sampled from primary care clinics, diagnosed with BPE and reported nocturia at least once nightly. The comparison control group had no BPE and one or no nocturia episodes per night.

According to the new study published in the Journal of the American Board of Family Medicine, the BGU researchers found that more than half (57.8 percent) of patients with enlarged prostates may in fact have the sleep disorder, and that the awakenings that patients ascribed to their need to urinate at night may be actually caused by their sleep disorders. 

Waking during the night to void, known as “nocturia” is a common BPE symptom. OSA is a sleep disorder characterized by snoring, witnessed apneas, awakenings and day sleepiness. 

"If nocturia severity in BPE patients is actually a pre-existing sleep disorder, this can now be treated and help improve patients’ quality of life," explains Dr. Howard Tandeter, a researcher in BGU’s Department of Family Medicine, Faculty of Health Sciences. He recommends that physicians following patients with BPE who report frequent awakenings from sleep to urinate should suspect OSA as a possible cause and treat accordingly.

“Even among those patients with well-defined medical reasons for nocturia, sleep disorders may still be found as the source of most awakenings from sleep. Therefore, the diagnosis of a sleep disorder should be seriously considered whenever a patient reports frequent awakenings from sleep   to urinate since the problem is treatable,” explains Tandeter.

 

Nocturic Episodes in Patients with Benign Prostatic Enlargement May Suggest the Presence of Obstructive Sleep Apnea

Howard Tandeter, MD, Sammy Gendler,1 Jacob Dreiher, MD, MPH, and Ariel Tarasiuk, PhD.

1Faculty of Health Sciences, Siaal Research Center for Family Medicine and Primary Care

2 Department of Family Medicine, Ben-Gurion University of the Negev (HT, JD, AT)

3Clalit Health Services (HT, JD); and the Sleep-Wake Disorders Unit, Soroka University Medical Center (AT), Beer-Sheva, Israel.

 

American Associates, Ben-Gurion University of the Negev

American Associates, Ben-Gurion University of the Negev plays a vital role in sustaining David Ben-Gurion's vision, creating a world-class institution of education and research in the Israeli desert, nurturing the Negev community and sharing the University's expertise locally and around the globe. With some 20,000 students on campuses in Beer-Sheva, Sede Boqer and Eilat in Israel’s southern desert, BGU is a university with a conscience, where the highest academic standards are integrated with community involvement, committed to sustainable development of the Negev.

Media Contact:

Andrew Lavin
A. Lavin Communications
516-944-4486
alc@alavin.com

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