The aim of our study was to detect the presence of conjunctivochalasis (CCh) in obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) patients.
We included 54 subjects (41 OSA patients and 14 control subjects) in the study. All the patients were assessed regarding the presence and stage of CCh.
The patients were grouped according to their apnea-hypopnea index as determined during nocturnal polysomnography in our laboratory as mild (12 patients), moderate (16 patients), and severe (13 patients) OSA. The CCh rate was 87.8% in the OSA group and 57.1% in the control group (P=0.022). Mean CCh stage was 1.58±1.24, 2.38±0.88, and 2.15±0.98 in the mild, moderate, and severe OSA groups, respectively, and 0.71±0.72 in the control group (P=0.0001).
The moderate and severe OSA groups were associated with higher rates and more advanced stages of CCh. We believe that detailed conjunctival assessment is necessary for patients with complaints such as burning, stinging, and foreign body sensation, which we frequently confront in daily practice. In particular, young patients diagnosed with CCh must be carefully assessed regarding sleep apnea. In light of the above findings, we suggest that patients with ocular surface symptoms that are not relieved by topical medical treatment should be assessed for CCh and OSA. Longitudinal studies monitoring the response of CCh to OSA treatment are needed to clarify the relationship between CCh and OSA.