Sweet Dreams: Artificial Intelligence Offers Promise in Sleep Apnea Diagnostics

Artificial Intelligence (AI) has been making plenty of news recently. But now it is making news in a new way. McKnight’s Senior Living is reporting on a new technology trend: researchers around the world are developing ways to use AI as a tool to diagnose sleep apnea and other sleeping disorders. The researchers believe this could make a significant difference for older adults and senior living operators in the US. In terms of impact, it is estimated that about 1 billion people ages 30 and over have sleep apnea. 

Researchers in South Korea believed that, in order for AI to be used as a tool for diagnosing sleep apnea, they first had to develop models to study the tongue and surrounding areas known to be connected to sleep apnea.  Early evidence suggests that, based on deep learning model data of nearly 6,000 head and neck x-ray images, the South Korean tool is highly accurate in detecting sleep apnea. Meanwhile, researchers in Japan are using their AI programs to identify biomarkers related to sleep apnea and other sleeping disorders. 

It is hoped that this AI technology could be used in senior living to improve resident health and safety. McKnights Senior Living reports that as this technology evolves, there are other researchers like those in Monash University who are creating wearable patches to monitor sleep-disorder-like symptoms. With researchers around the world working on this technology, there seem to be many potential ways to reduce the adverse effects of sleeping disorders for older adults. 


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Birkner, C. (2023).  Researchers develop AI tool to diagnose sleep apnea. McKnights Senior Living. https://www.mcknightsseniorliving.com/home/news/tech-daily-news/researchers-develop-ai-tool-to-diagnose-sleep-apnea/  

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