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ABCs of Sleep–A is for Apnea

Example of an obstructive apnea,
in which air cannot be inhaled
because of a physical blockage
in the upper airway.

APNEA
A complete cessation of airflow for at least ten seconds during sleep. Apneas may be central, obstructive, or mixed.

CENTRAL APNEA (aka CSA)
A complete cessation of airflow and respiratory effort for at least ten seconds during sleep.

OBSTRUCTIVE APNEA (aka OSA)
A full cessation of airflow for at least 10 seconds during sleep which is associated with a continuation of respiratory effort.

MIXED APNEA (aka COMPLEX APNEA)
A full cessation of airflow for at least ten seconds which begins central (no associated respiratory effort) and ends obstructive (respiratory effort).

Links to learn more:

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SOURCE for DEFINITIONS:
Spriggs, WH. (2010.) Glossary. In Essentials of Polysomnography (pp585-606). Sudbury, MA: Jones and Bartlett Publishers

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