Introduction: Obstructive sleep apnea syndrome (OSAS) is associated with a high frequency of gastroesophageal reflux and arousals. Nocturnal gastroesophageal reflux (nGER) is strongly associated with sleep disturbances and disturbed sleep results in increased nocturnal gastroesophageal reflux.
Objectives: It was aimed to study the prevalence of nocturnal gastroesophageal reflux in obstructive sleep apnea (OSA). In our study, we sought to evaluate the correlation between the frequency and type of arousals and episodes of nGER in OSA cases.
Materials and Methods: We conducted an observational study among sixty patients already diagnosed with OSA on the basis of standard sleep criteria. Demographic data, anthropometric measurements, and detailed medical history were recorded. All subjects underwent polysomnography study and filled out the validated Gastroesophagal disease-health related quality of life questionnaire (GERD-HRQL). Statistical analysis was done by the multivariate regression model.
Results: There was a strong significant correlation between apnea-hypopnea index (AHI) and GERD score. (r = 0.544, p = 0.002). Moreover, respiratory arousal index was also significantly correlated with GERD score (r = 0.370, p = 0.040). It was found that AHI was a strong predictor of GERD with a significant regression model (p < 0.002, r2 = 0.0272). Respiratory arousal index (RAI) was responsible for 13.7% (r2 = 0.137) variance which was statistically significant p = 0.040 (p < 0.05). Desaturation index (DI) also predicted significantly about the gastroesophageal reflux (p = 0.005).
Conclusion: The present results suggest that the occurrence of arousals was related to episodes of nGER in OSA.
Funding: This study was part of Short Term Research Studentship (STS) program of the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR).
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