Treatment-emergent central sleep apnoea is caused by the use of certain medications, such as opioids and sedatives, which can depress the respiratory centres in the brain and cause pauses in breathing during sleep. It can also be caused by neuromuscular disorders, such as myasthenia gravis, and certain medical conditions, such as stroke or brain injury.
Treatment-emergent central sleep apnoea is diagnosed by a sleep study, which measures breathing during sleep. Other tests, such as an EEG or brain MRI, may be used to rule out other conditions.
Treatment-emergent central sleep apnoea must be distinguished from other causes of central apnoea, such as congenital central hypoventilation syndrome and Cheyne-Stokes breathing.
Treatment of treatment-emergent central sleep apnoea includes discontinuing the medications that may be causing it, if possible. Other treatments may include the use of supplemental oxygen, positive airway pressure therapy, or even surgery.
The prognosis for treatment-emergent central sleep apnoea is generally good if the underlying condition is treated and the medications causing it are discontinued.