Review of Obstructive Sleep Apnea and its Implication for Death Investigation
Owen L. Middleton MD, Michel A. Cramer Bornemann MD
ABSTRACT: Obstructive sleep apnea is a prevalent disease which if left untreated can negatively impact many physiologic systems, most notably the cardiovascular system, resulting in chronic dysfunction, and even has the potential to present as sudden unexpected death. This review details prevalence of the disease, the physiologic mechanisms which account for its sequelae, clinical diagnosis in the living, treatment options, and morbidity and mortality. Additionally, specific discussion focuses on death investigation where obstructive sleep apnea may have contributed to the death of an individual and implications for death certification.