Impact of the sleep apnea management group clinic on positive airway pressure adherence

Katie Tran, Lu Wang, Reena Mehra, Robon Vanek, Shivani Kaw, Tina Campean, Nancy Foldvary-Schaefer, Douglas E. Moul, Harneet Walia

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background: Positive airway pressure (PAP) adherence is critical for managing obstructive sleep apnea (OSA). We postulate that group-based Sleep Apnea Management (SAM) clinic, which harnesses the benefits of providing mutual support as well as facilitates access to system-based resources and education, will confer improvements in PAP adherence. Methods: Data from SAM clinic attendees from January 2017 to June 2018 were retrospectively analyzed. Adherence data at SAM baseline visit and 1-3 months follow-up were collected. Average PAP usage from all-days and days used were analyzed along with demographics, co-morbidities, and Epworth Sleepiness Scale. Adherence was defined as >4 hours a night for ≥70% of nights over a 30-day period. Key structural elements of the SAM group clinic model were co-presence of the OSA care team members and peer group support. Key efficiency elements were group education and the prompt-to-patient multidisciplinary troubleshooting adherence barriers. Results: Of 110 SAM clinic attendees, average age was 60.9±12.7 years, 53% were men, and 46% Caucasian. At baseline, the mean for average-all-days usage was 4.2 hours, mean average-days-used usage was 5.2 hours, and mean percentage-of-days usage ≥4 hours was 57%. At follow-up, the mean average-all-days usage increased 1.2 hours (p<0.001), mean average-days-used usage increased 0.8 hours (p<0.001), and the mean percentage-of-days with usage ≥4 hours increased 16% (p<0.001). At baseline, 46% of patients met criteria for adherence, which increased to 66% at follow-up. Conclusion: In this study, after the SAM clinic, all PAP adherence parameters improved significantly. This observational study serves as a proof of concept study for future trials pertaining to group clinic in managing PAP adherence in OSA.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)189-194
Number of pages6
JournalSleep and Breathing
Issue number1
StatePublished - Mar 2022


  • Adherence
  • Group clinic
  • Obstructive sleep apnea
  • Positive airway pressure

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Otorhinolaryngology
  • Clinical Neurology


Dive into the research topics of 'Impact of the sleep apnea management group clinic on positive airway pressure adherence'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this