Did Lenin Die of Sleep Apnea?

May 14, 2012

In my periodic quest to find famous people and celebrities who might have obstructive sleep apnea, I came across someone who died over 88 years ago:  Vladimir Lenin.

In a recent article in the New York Times, various experts describe his medical ailments that lead up to his massive stroke and death at the age of 53. His cerebral arteries were found to be almost completely clogged. He supposedly had major sleep problems and had chronic headaches. He also had a strong family history of cardiovascular diseases, with his father dying of a cerebral hemorrhage at age 54, and siblings dying of a heart attack and stroke.

Lastly, notice that he had a mustache and a goatee. Many men with weak chins grow facial hair to make their chins more prominent. It’s not surprising that he also had narrow, triangular facial features. Take a look at his picture in the New York Times. It seems like he had a fat neck as well. 

What do you think about my theory?

How Erectile Dysfunction Can Cause Alzheimer’s

September 28, 2011

Not too surprisingly, focusing on lifestyle habits that control heart disease or taking medications to lower high blood pressure or cholesterol levels can also help symptoms of erectile dysfunction (ED). 

Dr. Stephen Kopecky, professor of medicine and cardiovascular diseases at the Mayo Clinic, and author of the paper published in Archives of Internal Medicine, quotes, “It’s a fascinating thing, but all the arteries are connected. We know that the risk factors for stroke are the same as for heart disease. We know that the risk factors for ED are the same as for heart disease. And we are finding that the risk factors for dementia and Alzheimer’s are the same as for heart disease.”

It’s frustrating that doctors are connecting all the dots, but rarely ever include obstructive sleep apnea as a major component of all these conditions. In this vein, having ED could mean that you’re at higher risk for obstructive sleep apnea, which causes diminished circulation to various parts of the body, including the penis and the brain. You can make a strong argument that everyone with ED should be screened for obstructive sleep apnea. 

What’s your opinion on this issue? Please enter your viewpoints in the text area below.


A Link Between Psoriasis and Heart Disease?

March 19, 2009

Skin disease is one area that I haven’t covered so far, but data from three large clinical trials suggests that having psoriasis significantly raises your risk for heart disease and stroke. Looking at this issue through my sleep-breathing paradigm, it all makes sense. Not being able to achieve deep efficient sleep can cause a low-grade physiologic stress response, which does two things: It constricts blood vessels going to end organs and parts of the body that you don’t need when you’re running from a tiger. This includes the bowels, the reproductive organs, and the skin. Less blood flow in general leads to poor healing and poor functioning. Chronic low-grade stresses can also ratchet up your immune system which ends up attacking it’s own body parts. In light of these possibilities, it’s not surprising at all that people with psoriasis have increased risk of cardiovascular disease. 

Is it just coincidence that psoriasis is linked to cardiovascular disease, or is it part of one big picture? 

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