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Saturday, 27 August 2005 12:41
BNN: British Nursing News Online · www.bnn-online.co.uk
Sleep study to examine snoring affect
Researchers from City Hospital in Nottingham are investigating whether snoring during pregnancy can affect a babys health through lack of oxygen.

Birth weight is thought to be restricted by a lack of oxygen during sleep and scientists will use a 6,000 grant from Action Medical Research to study the link between apnoea where a person stops breathing for a short time during sleep and birth weight.

Prof Jim Thornton of City Hospital, part of the study team, said: "My interest in this goes back many years when I had a patient who had the classic signs of sleep apnoea - loud snoring and low oxygen levels during sleep.

"She went on to lose her baby, which her scans had shown to be very small.

"We know that oxygen levels can have an impact on intrauterine growth."

He added that there have been cases where pregnant women have lost a baby during a severe asthma attack, again indicating a link with oxygen levels.

"There are many reasons for low birth weight, of course, but sleep apnoea is very easy to treat and if there is a link, it's something we can quickly put right and so help prevent growth restriction in an unborn baby," he said.

The team is handing out questionnaires and using equipment to monitor patients as part of the study.


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