Here are some of the complications associated with sleep apnea:
High blood pressure.
Impotency and sexual dysfunction.
Job impairment and motor vehicle crashes.
Hyperactivity in children.
Risk for heart attack and stroke.
Sudden infant death syndrome.
Increase in the number of red blood cells.
Enlarged right ventricle of the heart (cor pulmonale).
Potentially life-threatening heart arrhythmias, including heartbeat slowing and racing.
Pickwickian syndrome (excessive sleepiness and CO2 retention).
Chronic daytime low blood oxygen and increased blood CO2.
Sleep apnea can cause serious problems if it goes untreated. Your risk of heart disease and stroke is higher if severe sleep apnea is not treated. You are also more likely to have traffic accidents if you drive while you're sleepy. If you have sleep apnea, it is very important for you to seek treatment. Actually, sleep apnea may already have affected you more than you know. It is almost certain that things will improve for you once the diagnosis is made and you begin your treatment. Remember that you are not alone and that help is available.