Serum magnesium levels in patients with Obstructive Sleep Apnoea: A systematic review and meta-analysis

Zahraa Al Wadee, Soo Liang Ooi, Sokcheon Pak

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)
26 Downloads (Pure)


Aims: Obstructive sleep apnoea (OSA) affects patients’ quality of life and health. Magnesium (Mg) is an essential mineral and a potent antioxidant. Mg deficiency can worsen oxidative stress caused by sleep deprivation or disorders. The impact of OSA on serum Mg levels and its health consequences remain unclear. 

Data Synthesis: This study systematically reviewed clinical studies investigating the serum Mg levels of OSA patients and the potential relationships with other biomarkers. Six articles were included for qualitative synthesis and quantitative analysis. Two out of four studies that compared OSA patients to healthy controls found them to have significantly lower serum Mg levels. Our meta-analysis with three studies shows that patients with OSA had significantly lower serum Mg with an effect size of −1.22 (95% CI: −2.24, −0.21). However, the mean serum Mg level of OSA patients (n = 251) pooled from five studies (1.90 mg/dL, 95% CI: 1.77, 2.04) does not differ significantly from the normal range between 1.82 to 2.30 mg/dL. OSA severity appears to affect serum Mg negatively. Serum Mg levels generally improve after treatment, coinciding with the improvement of OSA severity. Low serum Mg levels correlate with the worsening of cardiovascular risk biomarkers of C-reactive protein, ischaemia-modified albumin, and carotid intima-media thickness. The serum Mg levels also potentially correlate with biomarkers for lipid profile, glucose metabolism, calcium, and heavy metals.

Conclusions: Sleep deprivation appears to deplete Mg levels of OSA patients, making them at risk of Mg deficiency, which potentially increases systemic inflammation and the risk of cardiovascular and metabolic diseases.

Original languageEnglish
Article number2273
Number of pages16
Issue number9
Publication statusPublished - 14 Sept 2022


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