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The Irish Sleep Apnoea Trust Ireland

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Irish Sleep Apnoea Trust ISAT

Iontaobhas Apnoea Codlata na hÉireann

The Irish Sleep Apnoea Trust promotes awareness, understanding and treatment of Sleep Apnoea through education, research and fund raising.

The Irish Sleep Apnoea Trust (ISAT), non-political, non-profit, voluntary, advocacy, patient support group for sufferers (& families) of Obstructive Sleep Apnoea Syndrome (OSAS).

Welcome to the website homepage of the Irish Sleep Apnoea Trust, (ISAT) (in Gaelic) "Iontaobhas Apnoea Codlata na hÉireann".  You will find our website is a great source of informative to you on sleep apnoea and indeed some other sleep-related disorders.  The website is easy to navigate and will render well in smartphones like iPhone and android.  Please return often as we regularly update.  It is essential to do so as our advocacy programme propagates.

If you feel you might suffer from a sleep disorder or have queries, comments or suggestions, complete the feedback form, send an Email, write or phone.

Our Contact Page carries all of the contact co-ordinates required for your easy decision on preferred method of interaction and communication with ISAT.


What is Obstructive Sleep Apnoea Syndrome?

Sleep Apnoea (apnea - US spelling) is a sleep disorder where the sufferer frequently stops breathing during their sleep. Breathing can stop repeatedly for ten seconds and longer in extreme cases.

Awareness of Obstructive Sleep Apnoea Syndrome (OSAS) in Ireland is relatively poor though improving through the work of ISAT and it's associates.  The disorder can be a major source of daytime sleepiness and tiredness, which can be especially lethal in vehicle drivers. This issue was dealt with in detail at the 2007 Irish Sleep Society 3rd Annual Scientific and AGM.

Have a look at our Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ's) page if you have suspicions!

Untreated sleep apnoea is a deadly dealer in developing cardio vascular problems, respiratory illnesses and indeed the onset of diabetes etc...


Sleep Apnoea is a Very Serious Medical Condition.

There are three types of Sleep Apnoea (derived from “Apnea,” a Greek word meaning, “without breath”). The most common type of sleep apnoea is Obstructive Sleep Apnoea (OSA), caused by an obstruction of the patient’s airway.  In the USA, nearly fourteen million American’s suffer from OSA.  During a sufferers sleep, the soft tissue in the rear of the throat collapses and flops closed, resulting in a blockage that prevents normal breathing.  OSA is probably as common as adult diabetes and now we see there is a correlation.

While OSA usually affects males between 30 and 50, anyone can suffer from the disorder and people who smoke, drink alcohol or are obese are at a much higher risk.

Central Sleep Apnoea, where part of the brain that controls ones breathing fails to function routinely, and mixed apnoea, a combination of the two, are less common.

Persons with untreated obstructive sleep apnoea face very serious health risks that encompass a much greater health and work safety risk, far beyond just a sleepless night.

Presently, although there are some 6,500 / 7,500 patients diagnosed in Ireland with Obstructive Sleep Apnoea (OSA), European Union medical research indicates that somewhere in the region of 95/105,000 people in Ireland actually suffer from the disorder, ranging from mild to severe.  A layman's definition of Sleep Apnoea is the cessation of breathing during sleep.

Some of the problems facing people with untreated Obstructive Sleep Apnoea Syndrome (OSAS) are:

  • lack of understanding of the condition

  • lack of meaningful support for sufferers

  • work performance and reliability diminish

  • danger to themselves & work colleagues vis-a-vie health & safety, especially driving

  • severe reduction in short term memory

  • severe disruption to social and family life

  • a real threat to their quality of life

  • possible early death!


ISAT calls on the HSE, the RSA and the Irish Government to take steps to make the people of Ireland and the medical profession more aware of Obstructive Sleep Apnoea (OSA).  Treatment is cost effective and it is relatively easy to achieve a remedy to the disorder for sufferers and their families. 

The numbers of people unnecessarily suffering from OSA who through diagnosis, assessment and simple treatment could be brought back into the workforce are staggering.  The treatment also prevents people going on to develop more seriously related illnesses such as cardio vascular and additional respiratory disorders, which in turn will place a higher fiscal burden on the Irish Health Service.


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