Risk of gallstones in patients with obstructive sleep apnea: a nationwide observational cohort study.


Graduate Institute of Biomedical Sciences, School of Medicine, College of Medicine, China Medical University, No. 2, Yuh-Der Road, Taichung, 404, Taiwan. [Email]


OBJECTIVE : To assess the association between obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) and gallstones.
METHODS : We identified 3827 patients aged ≥ 20 years with OSA between 2000 and 2010 from the Longitudinal Health Insurance Research Database 2000 (LHID2000) as the study cohort. The beneficiaries without OSA were randomly selected and propensity-matched with the study cohort in a 1:1 ratio according to age; sex; occupation; urbanization; comorbidities of hypothyroidism, hyperlipidemia, diabetes, liver cirrhosis, alcohol-related illness, hypertension, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), obesity, inflammatory bowel disease, stroke, coronary artery disease (CAD), hepatitis B virus, and hepatitis C virus; and the index year. All patients were followed until the end of 2011 or withdrawal from the National Health Insurance program to determine the incidence of gallstones.
RESULTS : The prevalence of OSA was higher in men (67.3%) and in patients younger than 49 years (57.0%; mean age 47.8 ± 15.1 years). The cumulative incidence of gallstones was higher in the OSA cohort than in the non-OSA cohort (log-rank test, P < 0.001). Compared with patients without OSA, those with OSA had an increased risk of gallstones (adjusted hazard ratio = 1.53, 95% confidence interval = 1.16-2.03) after adjustment for age, sex, hyperlipidemia, diabetes, hypertension, COPD, stroke, and CAD.
CONCLUSIONS : The study shows a strong association between OSA and gallstones. Moreover, our findings suggest the requirement for survey and health education for gallstones in OSA and further studies to verify whether the treatment of OSA can reduce the risk of gallstones.


Comorbidities,Gallstones,Obstructive sleep apnea,