Health and quality of life outcomes 2017 03 1415(1) 48 doi 10.1186/s12955-017-0624-x
In those with symptoms indicative of obstructive sleep apnea (OSA), respiratory-specific health-related quality of life (HRQL) may be an important patient-centered outcome. The aim of this study was to assess the associations between sleepiness, fatigue, and impaired general and respiratory-specific HRQL among persons with suspected OSA.
We evaluated military veterans consecutively referred for suspected OSA with sleep studies yielding apnea-hypopnea index (AHI) values. They also completed the sleepiness (Epworth Sleepiness Scale [ESS]), and fatigue (Fatigue Severity Scale [FSS]) questionnaires, as well as two HRQL instruments (the generic Short-Form SF-12v2 yielding the Physical Component Scale [PCS] and the respiratory-specific Airways Questionnaire [AQ]-20R). Multiple linear regression tested the associations between ESS and FSS (standardized as Z scores for scaling comparability) with AQ-20R, accounting for AHI, SF-12v2-PCS and comorbid respiratory conditions other than OSA.
We studied 1578 veterans (median age 61.1 [IQR 16.8] years; 93.9% males). Of these, 823 (52%) met AHI criteria for moderate to severe OSA (AHI ≥15/h). The majority reported excessive daytime sleepiness (53%; median ESS 11 [IQR 9]) or fatigue (61%; median FSS 42 [IQR 23]). The median AQ-20R was 4 [IQR 1-8]. Controlling for AHI, SF-12v2-PCS, respiratory co-morbid conditions, body mass index, and demographics, both ESS and FSS were significantly associated with poorer AQ-20R: for each; ESS, 1.6 points (95% CI 1.4-1.9), and for FSS, 2.5 points (95% CI, 2.3-2.7).
Greater daytime sleepiness and fatigue are associated with poorer respiratory-specific HRQL, over and above the effects of OSA, respiratory comorbidity, and generic physical HRQL.