Symptoms and Risk Factors of Central Sleep Apnea
The patient may wake from sleep suddenly with shortness of breath and having trouble falling asleep and staying asleep for long periods of time. This can occur many times per night which leads to restless nights and days where the patient has trouble functioning due to a lack of sleep.
Like Obstructive Sleep Apnea, one of the risk factors is a advance in age. Older persons in middle age and the elderly are most likely to suffer from central sleep apnea. People with congestive heart conditions are also at an increased risk of central sleep apnea. Anyone that has suffered a brain stem stroke is also at risk, as this is where breathing starts in the impulse to breathe starts. Use of narcotic medications before bed can also be a cause, but is rare.