Obstructive Sleep Apnea and Hypertension: Why Treatment Does Not Consistently Improve Blood Pressure

Gianfranco Parati, Martino Francesco Pengo, Carolina Lombardi

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


Purpose of Review: Obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) and hypertension are two phenomena deeply linked together and, although a causal relationship has been suggested, a recent meta-analysis showed only a very modest effect of OSA treatment on blood pressure (BP). However, a vast number of randomized controlled trials published so far share some limitations, mainly of methodological nature: neither OSA nor BP is always assessed in a standardized way. Moreover, compliance with OSA treatment is often sub-optimal making the results of these trials difficult to interpret. Recent Findings: Recent studies have shown that antihypertensive drugs can reduce BP more than OSA treatment, showing a better compliance profile and very few side effects. Summary: Considering the importance of reducing the overall cardiovascular risk of OSA patients, a more careful management of patient’s antihypertensive medication could allow a better BP control also in this condition. In addition, greater efforts should be made to improve patient’s acceptance of OSA treatment with the aim of improving their compliance.

Original languageEnglish
Article number30
JournalCurrent Hypertension Reports
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Apr 1 2019


  • Blood pressure
  • Continuous positive airway pressure
  • Hypertension
  • Mandibular advancement device
  • Obstructive sleep apnea

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Internal Medicine


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