CHEST: CPAP Doesn't Adversely Affect Sex Life

Patients who adhere to treatment are as satisfied with sexual activity as those who don't

THURSDAY, Oct. 23, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- A patient's sex life is unlikely to suffer because of sleep apnea treatment, according to a new study scheduled to be presented at the annual meeting of the American College of Chest Physicians, held from Oct. 25 to 30 in Austin, Texas.

Noting that many patients who use continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) believe it makes them less sexually attractive, and therefore may make them less likely to comply with treatment, researchers from Rosalind Franklin University in Chicago sought to find out more about how CPAP affects patients' sex lives.

The researchers surveyed 52 patients who were prescribed the treatment and found that, of those patients, 27 were compliant (used CPAP more than four hours a night on 70 percent of nights) and 25 were not compliant. All were asked 10 questions related to physical and emotional aspects of sexual activity. After adjusting for other factors, the investigators found that compliant and non-compliant patients had similar sexual quality-of-life scores.

"This study suggests that CPAP compliance does not impair sexual quality of life in patients with sleep apnea," Mark Rosen, M.D., medical director of the American College of Chest Physicians, said in an association news release.

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