Racial and ethnic differences in sleep-disordered breathing and sleep duration among stroke patients



      We sought to characterize racial and ethnic differences in pre- and post-stroke sleep-disordered breathing (SDB) and pre-stroke sleep duration.


      Within the Brain Attack Surveillance in Corpus Christi cohort of patients with ischemic stroke (8/26/2010-1/31/2020), pre-stroke SDB risk was assessed retrospectively using the Berlin Questionnaire. Post-stroke SDB was defined by prospective collection of the respiratory event index (REI) using the ApneaLink Plus performed shortly after stroke. Pre-stroke sleep duration was self-reported. We used separate regression models to evaluate the association between race/ethnicity and each outcome (pre-stroke SDB, post-stroke SDB, and pre-stroke sleep duration), without and with adjustment for potential confounders.


      There was no difference in pre-stroke risk of SDB between Black and non-Hispanic white (NHW) participants (odds ratio (OR) 1.07, 95% CI 0.77-1.49), whereas MA (Mexican American), compared to NHW, participants had a higher risk of SDB before adjusting for demographic and clinical variables (OR 1.26, 95% CI 1.08-1.47). Post-stroke SDB risk was higher in MA (estimate 1.16, 95% CI 1.06-1.28) but lower in Black (estimate 0.79, 95% CI 0.65-0.96) compared to NHW participants; although, only the ethnic difference remained after adjustment. MA and Black participants had shorter sleep duration than NHW participants (OR 0.83, 95% CI 0.72-0.96 for MA; OR 0.67, 95% CI 0.49-0.91 for Black participants) before but not after adjustment.


      Racial/ethnic differences appear likely to exist in pre- and post-stroke SDB and pre-stroke sleep duration. Such differences might contribute to racial/ethnic disparities in stroke incidence and outcomes.

      Key Words


      AHI (apnea-hypopnea index), BASIC (Brain Attack Surveillance in Corpus Christi), BMI (body mass index), MA (Mexican American), NIHSS (NIH stroke scale score), NHW (non-Hispanic White), REI (respiratory event index), SDB (sleep-disordered breathing), TIA (transient ischemic attack)
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