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New Study Shows Sleep Apnea Patients More Likely to Fail Driving Test

A new study from University Hospital in Leeds found that those suffering from sleep apnea were more likely to fail a driving simulator test and report falling asleep while driving than people without the condition.

Sleep apnea is a sleep condition in which a person stops breathing for periods of time throughout the night, leading to disrupted sleep.

The study was conducted in two parts. The first tested the driving ability of 133 people with untreated sleep apnea and 89 people without the condition through an approximate 56 mile driving simulation. The second compared the driving of people with sleep apnea to those without sleep apnea, 118 of whom had untreated sleep apnea and 69 who did not, through a questionnaire regarding driving behavior, and then underwent the same simulated driving course.

Thirty-five percent of people suffering from sleep apnea reported falling asleep while performing the driving test, while 38 percent failed the test. No one in the group without sleep apnea failed the test. However, 11 percent of people not suffering from untreated sleep apnea admitted to nodding off while driving.

For more on this study, visit Huffington Post’s Healthy Living blog.

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