A report from Healio reviews new research that shows how cancer rates can increase with sleep apnea severity.

In a large cohort study of 33,000 participants, severity of obstructive sleep apnea was independently associated with incident cancer, according to data scheduled for presentation at the American Thoracic Society International Conference.

“Chronic hypoxemia and fragmented sleep are mechanisms by which obstructive sleep apnea is proposed to contribute to cancer development,” Tetyana Kendzerska, MD, PhDassociate scientist at The Ottawa Hospital and assistant professor in the division of respirology at University of Ottawa, Canada, said in a press release. “However, epidemiological evidence linking OSA and cancer is still inconclusive.”

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