Sleep-disordered breathing (SDB) and cardiometabolic risk factors are male prevalent.
This study investigated whether gender differences remained prominent after matching for the apnea hypopnea index (AHI) and postmenopause.
In a retrospective analysis of 350 eligible SDB patients, female patients were matched with male patients of the same age and body mass index (BMI) (age-BMI-matched [nAHImt]; n = 102 pairs) or were matched with male patients of the same age, BMI, and AHI (age-BMI-AHI-matched [AHImt]; n = 66 pairs). The nAHImt or AHImt patients were further separated into junior and senior subgroups.
In the nAHImt/junior group, women had shorter neck circumferences, better sleep architecture, and lower AHI, Epworth Sleepiness Scale (ESS) score, blood pressure (BP), total cholesterol (TC), triglyceride (TG), and uric acid (UA) than nAHImt/junior men. In the AHImt/junior group, women had shorter neck circumferences, lower waist/hip ratios, ESS, BP, TG, and UA than AHImt junior men. In the nAHImt/senior group, women had lower AHI, neck circumferences, waist/hip ratios, diastolic BP, and UA than men. In contrast, in the AHImt/senior group, most cardiometabolic parameters were similar between women and men. After further matching for the AHI, many elements of gender differences disappeared.
Compared with AHImt men, women had lower UA, TG, BP, and daytime sleepiness before menopause, but gender differences became indistinguishable postmenopause. We suggested that matching sleep quality or adjusting AHI would be noteworthy and required for studying gender differences.