Prospective Investigation of the Impact of Smoking and Smoking Cessation on Obstructive Sleep Apnea




Assistant Professor of Nursing

Project Summary

The purpose of this study is to examine the effect of smoking and smoking cessation, as an ongoing longitudinal study of middle-aged and older adults in South Korea. This study uses the 4-year follow-up data of the Korean Genome and Epidemiology Study (KoGES).  All study participants underwent a comprehensive assessment of smoking habits—current smoking status, pack-years of cigarettes, and periods of smoking cessation. Our goal is to examine possible cross-sectional associations between current smoking status (i.e., current, former, and no smoking) and presence and severity of OSA (Obstructive Sleep Apnea). Additionally, we will examine if persistent versus cessation of smoking changes the presence and severity of OSA over four years.

Through my current research experience, I learned that most healthcare personnel recommend the cessation of smoking, due to the suggestive association between smoking and OSA, through current researched data. This is recommended for the treatment of OSA patients, however, a huge controversy persists on whether smoking causally relates to OSA. In addition, results from small studies have conflicting outcomes regarding the effect of nicotine replacement therapy on OSA. Still fewer longitudinal studies support the notion that smoking cessation improves OSA. Therefore, the results of this study will expand current knowledge on the robust impacts of smoking on the development and treatment of OSA. We expect this study will elicit future studies to develop cognitive-behavioral interventions for OSA patients and will impact nursing research and practice.

Participating in this research project contributed to my educational experience as a nursing student. This experience has helped me to see the impact nursing research has on the practice of nursing, as well as in the overall healthcare field. Additionally, I see the problematic consequences of limited research on the impact of smoking on OSA. Conflicting data leads to conflicting treatment plans for patients, differing from provider to provider

Prospective Investigation of the Impact of Smoking and Smoking Cessation on Obstructive Sleep Apnea