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Obstructive sleep apnea and respiratory compromise: Know your risk

Obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) - a potentially serious sleep disorder that can stop a person's breathing during sleep - affects 25 million adults in the U.S. Individuals living with OSA may know they are at risk for high blood pressure, stroke, heart attack, diabetes or headaches. What they may not know is that OSA is also a risk factor for respiratory compromise, a potentially fataldream.

Respiratory compromise is the second leading avoidable patient safety issue and can occur during hospitalization when a patient is recovering from a surgery or during an outpatient procedure using anesthesia. Although relatively unknown, respiratory compromise can cause an individual's breathing to weaken, potentially leading to respiratory failure and even death. OSA is just one of several conditions that increase a person's risk for respiratory compromise; age, obesity and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease are other risk factors. 

Although respiratory compromise is a serious health issue, it is frequently preventable. By using appropriate therapies and patient monitoring technologies to evaluate a patient's respiratory status, healthcare professionals can detect respiratory compromise and treat patients earlier.

"OSA sufferers must understand that their condition not only impacts their sleep and overall health. They need to be aware that it may increase their risk for respiratory compromise. Signs of respiratory compromise include apneas or stop-breathing episodes and changes in consciousness and alertness, among others," said Dr. Peter C. Gay, a sleep medicine specialist. "If you have OSA and need to undergo a medical or surgical procedure, speak with your healthcare provider about respiratory compromise. It can be detected early with appropriate respiratory monitoring technologies."

To learn more about respiratory compromise, visit (BPT)

About Sacred Heart Villa

The Sisters of the Sacred Heart of Jesus Christ created Sacred Heart Villa (formerly St. Michael Convent) in 2003 with the vision of providing a personal care home for the Sisters and other seniors of southeastern Pennsylvania. The Sisters renovated St. Michael in order to create 35 personal care residential rooms. Sacred Heart Villa officially opened her doors to her first new residents in May 2004, with space for 57 Sisters and 40 other senior residents.  The facility has two residential buildings, a remodeled dining room, a new fireside lounge, library, cafĂ© and beauty shop. The chapel remains in the middle of the facility for it truly is the Heart of the community. Each new residential room provides an individual with privacy, safety and security in an environment of beauty and grace. Mass is celebrated each day, and is open to the public. 

Sacred Heart Villa is now accepting residents. If you are seeking care for yourself or loved one, contact Sacred Heart Villa today at 610-929-5751 for a tour. You can also visit