Obstructive sleep apnoea (OSA)

What is OSA?

Obstructive sleep apnoea (OSA) is the most common sleep-related breathing disorder. OSA is the complete obstruction (apnoea) or partial obstruction (hypopnoea) of the upper respiratory airways. It occurs when the muscles at the back of the throat relax or when the airways are too narrow from the nose to the glottis.

Apnoeas lower the oxygen levels in the blood, which can have severe consequences. The brain senses this impaired breathing and briefly rouses the person from sleep so they can reopen their airway. This awakening is usually so brief that it is not remembered. If there are several episodes in the same night, this results in an interrupted sleep that the patient feels when waking up, and that causes severe daytime drowsiness, mood changes, irritability, depression, anxiety, memory loss, difficulty concentrating, and sexual dysfunction.

OSA can also cause hypertension, cardiovascular problems and heart rhythm problems, metabolic disorders, cognitive behavioural disorders, traffic accidents and lower quality of life.

Who is affected by OSA?

OSA can affect people of all ages, including children. However, it is most common in men over 65, women after menopause, or adults with risk factors such as hypertension, excess weight, and smoking and drinking habits.

In Spain, between 6 and 8 % of the population is affected by OSA, 80 % of which is undiagnosed and therefore does not receive appropriate treatment.

OSA symptoms

The most obvious symptom of sleep apnoea is snoring or breathing starting and stopping during sleep. Other symptoms include daytime fatigue and sleepiness, headaches when waking up, and memory loss.

OSA treatment

The most common treatment for sleep apnoea is continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) delivered through a ventilator that fits into the nose. It consists of a mask attached to a turbine that delivers air at a set pressure, preventing the obstruction of the upper respiratory airways.

OXIGEN salud offers different kinds of ventilators to its patients, CPAP, APAP and BPAP, depending on which is the most convenient for their OSA treatment.

Sleep apnoea treatment

Sleep apnoea treatment

The most common treatment is continuous positive airway pressure delivered through a ventilator that fits into the nose.
Learn more

Other respiratory illnesses


A chronic respiratory illness in which the airways narrow or swell.
Learn more


COVID-19 is an infectious disease caused by the coronavirus SARS-CoV-2.
Learn more


Group of diseases that have an effect on the pulmonary interstitium.
Learn more


A disease that causes the obstruction of the airways.
Learn more

Cystic fibrosis

Chronic, hereditary and degenerative disease that causes thick mucus to build up in the lungs.
Learn more

Pulmonary hypertension

Pulmonary hypertension is a type of high blood pressure that affects arteries and blood vessels that supply the lungs.
Learn more

Other respiratory conditions

Other respiratory illnesses: common cold, flu, bronchitis, bronchiolitis, allergies, rhinitis, etc.
Learn more

OXIGEN Salud is responsible for data processing, with the purpose of managing queries and requests. You can exercise your data protection rights by sending an e-mail to dpo@oxigensalud.com.

We use Cookies

We use our own and third-party cookies for technical purposes, analysis and for advertising personalization. More information.