Obesity can lead to various health issues, including the inability to get a decent night’s sleep. It’s time to talk about obesity and one of its most prevalent comorbidities, sleep apnoea, with over half of the population being overweight and one in four being seriously obese (carrying 100 pounds or more of excess weight).
Obesity, it turns out, is one of the most major risk factors for sleep apnoea development.
Isn’t it reasonable to assume that weight loss surgery would be an effective therapy for obesity and sleep apnoea?
To address that question, let’s look at what sleep apnoea is, what causes sleep disruptions, and how sleep apnoea may be treated with one or more weight-loss operations.
What Causes Sleep Apnoea and How Does It Affect You?
Obstructive sleep apnoea (OSA) is a dangerous sleep condition characterized by the collapse of soft tissues surrounding the throat on occasion. When this happens while you’re sleeping, you stop breathing, which is known as apnoea, which is how the common sleep disorder received its name.
Obese people have thicker tissue around the neck and throat. Obesity makes sleep apnoea more likely because the diaphragm and chest muscles have to work harder to keep your airway open while you sleep.
You won’t be able to breathe until your airway is completely open, which will impair your blood pressure and oxygen levels. After a while, the blocked airway reopens, allowing you to breathe again. You can find yourself gasping for air when you wake up. Others with sleep apnoea jolt away abruptly, as if in a nightmare.
While it’s great that you’re breathing again, it’s not so great that you’re being startled awake all the time. People who suffer from sleep apnoea have poor sleep quality. This can cause a variety of health issues, including decreased oxygen supply to essential organs.
Sleep apnoea can raise the risk of hypertension (high blood pressure) and cardiac rhythm abnormalities if left untreated. Sleep apnoea can cause heart attacks and strokes in severe circumstances.
Bariatric surgery can help in this situation. Finding obesity-related comorbidity includes being diagnosed with sleep apnoea. If a person has a high BMI (40 or above) or a BMI of 35 with one or more comorbidities, such as sleep apnoea, health insurance may fund bariatric surgery.
What are the different types of sleep apnoea, and how can you know if you have one?
Sleep apnoea may be classified into three categories. Obstructive Sleep Apnoea (OSA), Central Sleep Apnoea (CSA), and Mixed Sleep Apnoea are the three types of sleep apnoea (MSA). OSA is the most prevalent type of sleep apnoea, in which your airway is blocked, causing you to stop breathing while sleeping. Weight increase, smoking, drinking alcohol, and sleeping in an uncomfortable posture can all contribute to OSA.
During sleep, central sleep apnoea causes the brain to stop delivering signals that control breathing. This is a very uncommon condition. Parkinson’s disease, heart failure, renal failure, and stroke are the most common causes.
OSA and CSA are combined in mixed sleep apnoea. Seeing a sleep specialist is the best approach to figure out which form of apnoea you have.
A polysomnogram, which is a device that detects rapid eye movement, heart rate, and respiration while you’re sleeping, can be used by a sleep expert to do an overnight test. The exam may be used to identify sleep apnoea as well as to measure your degree of sleep fitness.
Is Weight Loss Surgery Effective in Treating Sleep Apnoea?
Returning to our initial query. Isn’t it reasonable to assume that because sleep apnoea is a weight-related condition, weight loss surgery will completely cure it?
Gastric bypass and gastric sleeve are two weight loss (bariatric) operations that can help you shed up to 80% of your extra weight. As a result, sleep apnoea can be treated.
According to research, 78 percent of individuals who seek bariatric surgery suffer from obstructive sleep apnoea. Other comorbidities, such as hypertension and type 2 diabetes, are more common in these people.
OSA goes unnoticed in many of these circumstances. Even among people who are of normal weight, the problem goes misdiagnosed. Sleep apnoea has been diagnosed in as many as 20 million persons in the United States. This equates to 5% to 10% of the adult population. Experts estimate that up to 85% of cases in the United States have yet to be recognized.
Is it possible to treat sleep apnoea with a gastric sleeve or a gastric bypass?
Weight reduction surgery can begin when an overnight sleep study confirms that you have sleep apnoea. The good news is that bariatric operations such as gastric sleeve and gastric bypass can prevent many of the long-term issues that we find in patients who have their sleep interrupted on a regular basis. This implies that if you obtain therapy for both obesity and sleep apnoea, you may be able to prevent diabetes, congestive heart failure, or a full-blown heart attack.
You could find yourself more prepared to go to work after undergoing weight reduction surgery and dropping weight, as well as addressing sleep apnoea. Pilots and divers on huge rigs won’t be tempted to fall asleep at the wheel, and physicians and nurses will be able to devote their whole attention to the patients under their care. Whatever you do for a living, eliminating sleep apnoea from your life will result in a better night’s sleep and greater work performance.
Is a CPAP Machine Still Necessary After Bariatric Surgery?
A CPAP machine is one of the most used ways to provide constant airway pressure while sleeping. Continuous positive airway pressure is abbreviated as CPAP. As you prepare to sleep, put on a mask that covers your nose and mouth. Clean air is then blown via a tube into the mask and then into your nose and mouth by a machine. This procedure allows you to breathe more easily at night, resulting in a more peaceful and refreshing sleep.
The CPAP machine is quiet enough not to wake you up, and the settings are adjustable, enabling you to adjust the air pressure to a comfortable and sleep-inducing level.
While CPAP is an effective therapy for OSA, it does not cure the problem. On the other hand, weight loss surgery can give a long-term cure to this terrible sleep disorder.
Which type of bariatric surgery is best for sleep apnoea?
Obesity and sleep apnoea are treated with two frequent operations advocated by bariatric surgeons (along with other comorbidities like type 2 diabetes and hypertension).
Both the Roux-en-Y gastric bypass and the laparoscopic sleeve gastrectomy (gastric sleeve) entail stomach modifications. Gastric bypass surgery is a little different in that it reroutes your digestive tract. These treatments are safe, require around an hour, and are carried out laparoscopically, making them minimally invasive procedures.
Having your bariatric surgeon conduct the procedure utilizing a laparoscopic camera and other instruments has various advantages. Less anesthetic is used, and fewer and smaller incisions are made, resulting in a shorter recovery time, less scarring, and quicker healing.
Gastric Bypass Using Laparoscopy (Roux-en-Y)
Gastric bypass surgery necessitates incisions of less than an inch in length. The laparoscopic instruments are inserted into these ports of entry and robotically maneuvered by your surgeon. The surgeon will not cut you open like in open-heart surgery; thus, everything will happen inside your belly. A monitor near your surgeon allows him or her to operate the tools. Gastric bypass surgery is a safe and efficient way to lose weight in the hands of a trained surgeon.
The Gastric Bypass Surgery
The removal of 80% of your stomach tissue is the first step in the gastric bypass procedure. The leftover tissue is converted into a pouch, which restricts how much food you may consume. After that, the upper stomach is diverted to the small intestine, bypassing the lower stomach and allowing for regulated digestion. As a result of the operation, hormonal changes occur, making you feel less hungry and satisfied sooner during meals.
The gastric bypass procedure has been demonstrated to help people shed 60% to 80% of their extra weight. Gastric bypass surgery has also been demonstrated to be a successful therapy for sleep apnoea.
Laparoscopic Sleeve Gastrectomy (LSG) begins similarly to gastric bypass, with the removal of around 80% of your stomach. The leftover tissue is shaped into a tiny pouch. This pouch, which resembles a banana and is frequently referred to as a sleeve, lends this bariatric treatment its distinct moniker.
The gastric sleeve is a constrictive bariatric procedure, which implies it restricts your food intake. For some people, a gastric sleeve is sufficient to assist them in losing a large amount of extra weight. For patients suffering from extreme obesity, as well as heart and lung issues, the gastric sleeve may be just one milestone in their weight loss journey.
Once the patient has lost enough weight to warrant a healthier procedure, the surgeon can easily convert gastric sleeves to gastric bypass.
There’s also the gastric band or the Lap-Band, albeit the laparoscopic band is becoming less popular. The reason for this is that the band is prone to slippage and other issues, which may necessitate a bariatric revision. Instead, many surgeons are opting for more dependable procedures such as gastric bypass or gastric sleeve.
Gastric sleeve surgery is considered low-risk and is fast becoming the most popular bariatric surgery due to its safety, shorter recovery time than gastric bypass surgery, and ability to offer patients with long-term weight loss success.
Gastric sleeve surgery is also an option for treating sleep apnoea.
How Long Will It Take for Gastric Surgery to Treat Sleep Apnoea?
It’s an exciting moment to get weight loss surgery. You get to imagine how much weight you’re going to shed. Weight loss surgery aids in weight loss by reducing your food intake and making you feel less hungry. However, bariatric surgery is not a panacea. To lose weight, you must make healthy dietary choices and exercise regularly. If you can stick to your surgeon’s suggestions, you should be able to lose weight quickly. Within the first two years, bariatric patients often lose 50 to 80 percent of their extra body weight.
The expectation is that when the weight is lost, the fatty tissue surrounding the throat will shrink as well. The idea is to keep you from having the upper airway collapse that caused your sleep apnoea problems in the first place. You’ll be able to breathe easier and sleep better if you carry less excess weight. According to research, one of the most important techniques for reducing weight is to sleep more soundly at night. You’re doing a great thing for your health and quality of life by having weight reduction surgery for obesity and sleep apnoea.
Will Weight Loss Surgery Be Covered by Insurance?
Health insurance is intended to cover life-saving treatments and medical procedures that will improve your quality of life. Bariatric surgery is both a life-saving procedure and one that may improve your life in a variety of exciting ways.
As a result, if you have a correct diagnosis for sleep apnoea plus one for obesity, chances are insurance companies will cover some or all of the cost of your operation. Your experience will differ based on your insurance company and the health coverage you have.
Meet award winning best bariatric surgeon in Ahmedabad, book your free appointment with Dr. Manish Khaitan at NObesity today to clear all doubts regarding your pre & post surgery care.