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Screening of Obstructive Sleep Apnea

A Review of Questionnaire-based Tools

Joseph, Nitin, MBBS, MD (Community Medicine), PGDFM; Shenoy, Anjana Bhami; Manikandan, Nivetha; Thulaseedharan, Devu Krishna

doi: 10.1097/CPM.0000000000000281
Topics in Pulmonary Medicine

Obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) is a significant problem resulting from the obstruction of the upper airway. It leads to cardiovascular disorders, cognitive impairment, epilepsy, fatigue, sleepiness, diabetes, and perioperative complications. It is important to identify and treat OSA before it leads to other comorbidities. Thus, reliable questionnaire-based methods have been developed for screening this disease. This review article elaborates the most common questionnaires used for the screening of OSA: the STOP questionnaire, STOP-Bang questionnaire, Berlin questionnaire, Epworth Sleepiness Scale, Fatigue Severity Scale, and the 4-Variable Screening Tool. Of these questionnaire-based screening tools, it was found that the STOP-Bang questionnaire was the most sensitive screening tool for OSA. It is a quick and reliable method that can be used during routine practice to screen for OSA and to stratify patients into high-risk and low-risk groups before they can be subjected to further evaluation by polysomnography.

Department of Community Medicine, Kasturba Medical College, Manipal Academy of Higher Education, Mangalore, Karnataka, India

Disclosure: The authors declare that they have no conflicts of interest.

Address correspondence to: Nitin Joseph, MBBS, MD (Community Medicine), PGDFM, Department of Community Medicine, Kasturba Medical College, Light House Hill Road, Manipal Academy of Higher Education, Mangalore 575001, Karnataka, India. E-mail:

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