PURPOSE: Obstructive sleep apnea syndrome (OSAS) is associated with several medical comorbid conditions. We hypothesized that patients with OSAS use the health care system more than matched controls.
METHODS: Using ICD-9 codes, we searched administrative databases at the Veterans Health Administration to identify patients with OSAS and age, gender and ethnicity matched controls. Then, we compared out-patient health care uses for three-year period before and three-year period after the date of OSAS diagnosis.
RESULTS: We identified 98, 791 cases with OSAS and 334, 824 controls. The cases were afflicted with significantly more various medical comorbid conditions. In cases compared to control, overall out-patient, urgent care and emergency health care uses were significantly higher before the diagnosis of OSAS and they remained higher during the three-year after diagnosis of OSAS.
CONCLUSION: Our study showed that patients with OSAS use health care resources more frequently than matched-controls. Further, the data suggest that increased health care utilization may not return to control level even up to three years after the diagnosis of OSAS.
CLINICAL IMPLICATIONS: Patients with OSAS use health care system more compared to controls years before the diagnosis. This higher health care use continues after diagnosis and may be indicative of the associated comorbid conditions.
DISCLOSURE: Amir Sharafkhaneh, No Financial Disclosure Information; No Product/Research Disclosure Information