CREMONA – Sleeping less than five hours a night is associated with nearly double the risk of peripheral artery disease: this is revealed by a study published in the European Heart Journal which involved more than 650,000 people. “Our study suggests that getting seven to eight hours of sleep a night is a good habit to reduce the risk of this condition,” says the study author. Shuai Yuan of the Karolinska institute in Stockholm. More than 200 million people worldwide suffer from peripheral arterial disease, a condition in which the arteries in the legs are blocked, restricting blood flow and increasing the risk of stroke and heart attack. Researchers have analyzed the associations between sleep duration and daytime nap and risk of peripheral arterial diseasethen used a technique called ‘Mendelian randomization’ to examine whether there was a cause-and-effect relationship between sleep disturbances and peripheral arterial disease.
It emerged that sleeping less than five hours a night is associated with an almost double (+74%) risk of peripheral arterial disease compared to seven to eight hours. Regarding the existence of an association of cause and effect between the two conditions (disturbed sleep and peripheral arterial disease), it has been seen that on the one hand cPoor sleepers have an increased risk of peripheral arterial diseaseon the other hand, those who already suffer from peripheral arterial disease are more likely to sleep little; In short, one disorder causes another and vice versa. “More research is needed on how disrupt the bidirectional link between poor sleep and peripheral arterial disease – concludes Yuan -. Lifestyle changes that help people get more sleep, such as being physically active, can reduce the risk of developing the condition. Furthermore, for those already suffering from it, managing the pain associated with the disease could allow patients to sleep well”. (ANSA)