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Sleep Apnea in Asians vs. Caucasians

Posted Aug 06 2010 8:43am

I've always suspected that Asians are much more susceptible to obstructive sleep apnea due to having smaller facial structures, and here's a study that supports my theory. Researchers in Hong Kong compared skeletal facial measurements between these two groups and found that although the average age and BMI were similar, Chinese subjects had much more severe obstructive sleep apnea (35% vs. 25%), and had significantly smaller facial bony measurements. However, Caucasians were significantly more overweight. For the same degree of obstructive sleep apnea, Caucasians were more overweight, and Chinese had more craniofacial bony restriction.


This explains why when Asian immigrants come to the US and begin eating Western foods, their rates of obesity, diabetes and heart disease goes up significantly higher than rates for the general population. I remember reading a while ago that the ethnic Chinese population in Queens, NY has an epidemic of young children being overweight with much higher degrees of diabetes as they get older.


For those of you from Asian descent, do your parents snore? If so, do they have high blood pressure, diabetes, or heart disease? Please enter your response in the comments box below.

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