Is it known that intermittent hypoxia - or sporadic occurrences of decreased oxygen- can stimulate the inflammatory pathways. Vascular inflammation is responsible for the progression of atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease.
This inflammation is caused by C-reactive proteins, which has been found in higher amounts in sleep apneic patients. Following this flow chart, you can see how inflammation resulting from sleep apnea can snowball to cause much bigger problems like heart disease and diabetes.
This is the chemical structure of C-reactive protein (CRP). Increased blood levels of this protein indicate the presence of inflammation or infection. A blood test can be performed in order to test for these elevated CRP levels. If elevated, the resulting inflammation can cause serious medical problems.
By: Jennifer LaBombard