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Sleep apnea linked to spinal cord injuries

When people suffer from spinal cord injuries, they might suffer from paralysis as well as many other health issues because of their inability to move freely and control certain bodily functions.

Now, a new study has linked sleep apnea to spinal cord injuries. The study found that 77 percent of people who scientists researched had sleep-disordered breathing after suffering a spinal cord injury. The report, which appeared in the Journal of Clinical Sleep Medicine, also found that 92 percent of spinal cord injury patients had poor sleep quality.

The report listed two types of sleep apnea that were found in the study participants, obstructive and central sleep apnea. Obstructive sleep apnea is when the throat muscles block the airway during sleep. Central sleep apnea is far less common and is caused by nervous system issues between the brain and breathing muscles.

Both types of sleep apnea can be extremely dangerous and people with spinal cord injuries might need to be more thoroughly screened for the condition. These conditions can lead to pauses of breathing during sleep.

When a person suffers from a spinal cord injury, they might not only have the expense of treating the injury itself, but also of any side effects that might arise. Sleep apnea is an example of a condition that people with spinal cord injuries might develop and need to seek treatment for.

An attorney in West Virginia can help a spinal cord injury victim ensure they receive compensation for their spinal cord injury as well as any health issues that arise as a result.

Source: The Huffington Post, "Sleep Apnea Common Among Spinal Cord Injury Patients: Study," Jan. 16, 2014

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