Skip to main content

02.12.2017 | Sleep Breathing Physiology and Disorders • Original Article | Ausgabe 3/2018 Open Access

Sleep and Breathing 3/2018

Relationships between MRI fat distributions and sleep apnea and obesity hypoventilation syndrome in very obese patients

Sleep and Breathing > Ausgabe 3/2018
C. D. Turnbull, S. H. Wang, A. R. Manuel, B. T. Keenan, A. G. McIntyre, R. J. Schwab, J. R. Stradling
Wichtige Hinweise

Electronic supplementary material

The online version of this article (https://​doi.​org/​10.​1007/​s11325-017-1599-x) contains supplementary material, which is available to authorized users.



Obesity is associated with both obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) and obesity hypoventilation. Differences in adipose tissue distribution are thought to underlie the development of both OSA and hypoventilation. We explored the relationships between the distribution of upper airway, neck, chest, abdominal and muscle fat in very obese individuals.


We conducted a cross-sectional cohort study of individuals presenting to a tertiary sleep clinic or for assessment for bariatric surgery. Individuals underwent magnetic resonance (MR) imaging of their upper airway, neck, chest, abdomen and thighs; respiratory polygraphy; 1 week of autotitrating CPAP; and morning arterial blood gas to determine carbon dioxide partial pressure and base excess.


Fifty-three individuals were included, with mean age of 51.6 ± 8.4 years and mean BMI of 44.3 ± 7.9 kg/m2; there were 27 males (51%). Soft palate, tongue and lateral wall volumes were significantly associated with the AHI in univariable analyses (p < 0.001). Gender was a significant confounder in these associations. No significant associations were found between MRI measures of adiposity and hypoventilation.


In very obese individuals, our results indicate that increased volumes of upper airway structures are associated with increased severity of OSA, as previously reported in less obese individuals. Increasingly large upper airway structures that reduce pharyngeal lumen size are likely to lead to OSA by increasing the collapsibility of the upper airway. However, we did not show any significant association between regional fat distribution and propensity for hypoventilation, in this population.

Unsere Produktempfehlungen

e.Med Interdisziplinär


Für Ihren Erfolg in Klinik und Praxis - Die beste Hilfe in Ihrem Arbeitsalltag als Mediziner

Mit e.Med Interdisziplinär erhalten Sie Zugang zu allen CME-Fortbildungen und Fachzeitschriften auf

Jetzt e.Med zum Sonderpreis bestellen!

e.Dent - Das Online-Abo für Zahnärzte


Mit e.Dent erhalten Sie Zugang zu allen zahnmedizinischen Fortbildungen und unseren zahnmedizinischen und ausgesuchten medizinischen Zeitschriften.

e.Med Innere Medizin


Mit e.Med Innere Medizin erhalten Sie Zugang zu CME-Fortbildungen des Fachgebietes Innere Medizin, den Premium-Inhalten der internistischen Fachzeitschriften, inklusive einer gedruckten internistischen Zeitschrift Ihrer Wahl.

Jetzt e.Med zum Sonderpreis bestellen!

Über diesen Artikel

Weitere Artikel der Ausgabe 3/2018

Sleep and Breathing 3/2018 Zur Ausgabe

Neu im Fachgebiet Innere Medizin

Mail Icon II Newsletter

Bestellen Sie unseren kostenlosen Newsletter Update Innere Medizin und bleiben Sie gut informiert – ganz bequem per eMail.

© Springer Medizin