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Medical Surveillance Monthly Report

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Technical Report

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Armed Forces Health Surveillance Branch Silver Spring United States

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Obstructive sleep apnea OSA is a growing health concern in both civilian and military populations. Individuals who suffer from OSA have increased rates of cardiovascular disease, chronic fatigue, motor vehicle accidents, cognitive impairment, and post-traumatic stress disorder. Data from the Defense Medical Surveillance System DMSS were utilized to examine the incidence of OSA and associated attrition from service in active component military members from 1 January 2004 through 31 May 2016. The study identified 223,731 incident cases of OSA with an overall incidence rate of 139.2 per10,000 person-years, between 2004 and 2015. Rates increased more than3-fold between 2004 and 2015. In 2015, 48.1 of all incident cases of OSA were diagnosed in the last year of service. The high percentage of cases diagnosed prior to separation from service is concerning because OSA is a treatable and partially preventable disease. OSA represents a large health and economic burden for the armed services and yet there are persistent research gaps in appropriate screening and prevention strategies to improve both individual health and mission performance

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