Press release

New Analysis Shows Sleep Apnea More Common in Americas than Previously Thought

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ResMed (NYSE: RMD) (ASX: RMD) revealed roughly 170 million people across
North and South America have sleep apnea, according to a study it
presented at the annual SLEEP meeting hosted by the American Academy of
Sleep Medicine (AASM) and the Sleep Research Society.

The study, a deeper analysis of ResMed’s 2018 finding that 936 million
people worldwide have sleep apnea, concludes that:

  • 170 million people in North and South America (37 percent of adults)
    have sleep apnea, based on the AASM 2012 criteria – a “conservative”
  • 3 countries with the highest number of cases are the United States (54
    million), Brazil (49 million), and Colombia (11 million).

Sleep apnea is a chronic disease in which people stop breathing for 10
seconds or more throughout the night, repeatedly waking to breathe and
prevent suffocation. While sufferers rarely remember waking up, the
disruptive cycle causes chronic sleep deprivation, which is linked to
daytime fatigue, increases the risk in road and workplace accidents, and
is common among people with other diseases like heart failure, high
blood pressure, obesity, and type 2 diabetes.

“Previous estimates stated 100 million worldwide have sleep apnea. Now
we know it’s nearly double that in just the Americas alone,” said study
coauthor and ResMed Chief Medical Officer Carlos M. Nunez, M.D. “Given
how common sleep apnea is, especially among people with other common
diseases, doctors should screen their high-risk patients and help those
who are diagnosed get onto life-changing treatment as soon as possible.”

The gold standard treatment for sleep apnea is a positive airway
pressure (PAP) device that prevents the intermittent suffocation
associated with sleep apnea by blowing a mild stream of air into the
upper airway to keep it open and maintain breathing during sleep.

PAP devices that are cloud-connectable, enabling remote and
self-monitoring, have shown to raise
adherence rates above 80 percent
, compared to roughly 50 percent on
non-cloud connected devices.

“Digital health can show patients how well they’re doing on treatment,
coach them on how to improve, and motivate them by celebrating
milestones they’ve reached,” Nunez said. “These features all help drive
patient adherence, which is critical if we’re going to help millions
reduce the short- and long-term risks associated with sleep apnea.”

About ResMed

At ResMed (NYSE: RMD, ASX: RMD) we pioneer innovative solutions that
treat and keep people out of the hospital, empowering them to live
healthier, higher-quality lives. Our cloud-connected medical devices
transform care for people with sleep apnea, COPD and other chronic
diseases. Our comprehensive out-of-hospital software platforms support
the professionals and caregivers who help people stay healthy in the
home or care setting of their choice. By enabling better care, we
improve quality of life, reduce the impact of chronic disease and lower
costs for consumers and healthcare systems in more than 120
countries. To learn more, visit
and follow @ResMed.