A new study by Italian researchers being published in the Chronic Respiratory Disease journal will show that out of all medical conditions sleep apnoea is the most likely to be the cause of road accidents, and that treating the condition will save lives. The abstract for “Obstructive sleep apnoea, motor vehicle accidents, and work performance”, states:
“The obstructive sleep apnoea (OSA) shows a very high prevalence in the middle-age work force population and, between all diseases and medical conditions, is the major risk factor for motor vehicle accidents (MVAs). OSA can be diagnosed and treated, with resultant reduction in MVAs to those seen in the healthy population. It is increasing evidence that it is a major risk factor for occupational accidents also in fields different from the professional transport and for work disability.
“It is likely that the treatment of OSA results in the reduction of occupational accidents and work performance improvement with expected benefits in work processes and business in general. It is therefore advisable to develop strategies for screening and treatment of OSA in workers. The risk assessment of OSA in workers may also help to reduce the burden on national health care systems.”