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Misdiagnosis of Obstructive sleep apnea

Misdiagnosis of Obstructive sleep apnea

A diagnosis of obstructive sleep apnea may be delayed or missed because many people with the disorder do not know they have a problem. Spouses and other family members or friends whose sleep is disrupted by a person with obstructive sleep apnea are often the first ones to realize that there is a problem.

Unfortunately, it is not uncommon for the person with obstructive sleep apnea to deny that there is an issue. This is because symptoms of obstructive sleep apnea, such as snoring may be believed to be harmless.

Symptoms of obstructive sleep apnea can also mimic other conditions, such as snoring that does not occur with obstructive sleep apnea. Daytime symptoms, such as daytime sleepiness, irritability and difficulties with concentration can mimic symptoms of depression and perimenopause. These symptoms may also be associated with aging or stress....more about Obstructive sleep apnea »

Obstructive sleep apnea misdiagnosis: Sleep apnea was cited by Reader's Digest as one of the top 10 misdiagnosed diseases. In the article entitled "10 Diseases Doctors Miss", the 10 diseases mentioned were hepatitis C, lupus, celiac disease, hemochromatosis, aneurysm, Lyme disease, hypothyroidism (underactive thyroid), polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS), chlamydia, and sleep apnea. 1...more about Obstructive sleep apnea »

Alternative diagnoses list for Obstructive sleep apnea:

For a diagnosis of Obstructive sleep apnea, the following list of conditions have been mentioned in sources as possible alternative diagnoses to consider during the diagnostic process for Obstructive sleep apnea:

Diseases for which Obstructive sleep apnea may be an alternative diagnosis

The other diseases for which Obstructive sleep apnea is listed as a possible alternative diagnosis in their lists include:

Obstructive sleep apnea: Hidden Causes Misdiagnosed?

Causes of Obstructive sleep apnea may include these medical conditions:

Obstructive sleep apnea: Medical Mistakes

Related medical mistakes may include:

Obstructive sleep apnea: Undiagnosed Conditions

Commonly undiagnosed conditions in related areas may include:

Common Misdiagnoses and Obstructive sleep apnea

Mild worm infections undiagnosed in children: Human worm infestations, esp. threadworm, can be overlooked in some cases, because it may cause only mild or even absent symptoms. Although the most common symptoms are anal itch (or vaginal itch), which are obvious in severe cases, milder conditions may fail to be noticed in children. In particular, it may interfere with the child's good night's sleep. Threadworm is a condition to consider in children with symptoms such as bedwetting (enuresis), difficulty sleeping, irritability, or other sleeping symptoms. Visual inspection of the region can often see the threadworms, at night when they are active, but they can also be missed this way, and multiple inspections can be warranted if worms are suspected. See the introduction to threadworm.

Mesenteric adenitis misdiagnosed as appendicitis in children: Because appendicitis is one of the more feared conditions for a child with abdominal pain, it can be over-diagnosed (it can, of course, also fail to be diagnosed with fatal effect). One of the most common misdiagnosed is for children with mesenteric adenitis to be misdiagnosed as appendicitis. Fortunately, thus misdiagnosis is usually less serious than the reverse failure to diagnose appendicitis.

RLS sleep disorder causing night-time leg sensations often misdiagnosed: A common but relatively unknown sleep-related disorder called Restless Leg Syndrome (RLS) is often misdiagnosed. The typical symptoms are night-time tingling, crawling, or burning sensations in the legs, with the irresistable urge to move the legs. This need for leg movement leads to tossing and turning, or getting up out of bed, all of which interferes with the ability to fall asleep. The sufferer then has the typical symptoms of sleep deprivation during the day: fatigue, tiredness, morning headaches, irritability, poor concentration and so on. This condition is sometimes misdiagnosed as other conditions such as ADHD, sleep disorders, other causes of insomnia, or other causes of leg tingling. Many patients also suffer from a related disorder called Periodic limb movement disorder (PLMD), which causes leg spasms or other jerky movements. See introduction to RLS or introduction to PLMD.

Blood pressure cuffs misdiagnose hypertension in children: One known misdiagnosis issue with hyperension, arises in relation to the simple equipment used to test blood pressure. The "cuff" around the arm to measure blood pressure can simply be too small to accurately test a child's blood pressure. This can lead to an incorrect diagnosis of a child with hypertension. The problem even has a name unofficially: "small cuff syndrome". See misdiagnosis of hypertension.

Children with migraine often misdiagnosed: A migraine often fails to be correctly diagnosed in pediatric patients. These patients are not the typical migraine sufferers, but migraines can also occur in children. See misdiagnosis of migraine or introduction to migraine.

Obstructive sleep apnea: Rare Types

Rare types of medical disorders and diseases in related medical areas:

Medical news summaries about misdiagnosis of Obstructive sleep apnea:

The following medical news items are relevant to misdiagnosis of Obstructive sleep apnea:

Misdiagnosis and Obstructive sleep apnea deaths

Obstructive sleep apnea is a condition that can possibly be deadly if misdiagnosed...more »

General Misdiagnosis Articles

Read these general articles with an overview of misdiagnosis issues.

About misdiagnosis:

When checking for a misdiagnosis of Obstructive sleep apnea or confirming a diagnosis of Obstructive sleep apnea, it is useful to consider what other medical conditions might be possible misdiagnoses or other alternative conditions relevant to diagnosis. These alternate diagnoses of Obstructive sleep apnea may already have been considered by your doctor or may need to be considered as possible alternative diagnoses or candidates for misdiagnosis of Obstructive sleep apnea. For a general overview of misdiagnosis issues for all diseases, see Overview of Misdiagnosis.

1. Reader's Digest, February 2004, "10 Diseases Doctors Miss", page 120

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