Sleep Apnea Linked to Early Alzheimer's Onset: Study

Heavy snoring and sleep apnea may be linked earlier diagnoses of mild cognitive impairment (MCI) and Alzheimer's disease, according to a new study published in medical journal Neurology, NBC News reported. New York University researchers reviewed the medical histories of 2,470 people aged 55 to 90 who had participated in an earlier study designed to look for markers of Alzheimer's disease. At the outset, study volunteers were categorized as being free of memory and thinking problems, or in the early stages of mild cognitive impairment, or with Alzheimer's disease. Patients with sleep apnea were, on average, diagnosed with mild cognitive impairment (MCI) nearly 10 years earlier than those who didn't suffer from breathing problems, researchers found. The timespan for developing Alzheimer's also seemed to speed up, on average, by five years sooner than sound sleepers.

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