ap·​nea | \ ˈap-nē-ə How to pronounce apnea (audio) \

Definition of apnea

1 : transient cessation of respiration especially : sleep apnea

Examples of apnea in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Royal Philips has been subpoenaed by the Justice Department in relation to a recall of breathing-aid devices affecting millions of sleep-apnea patients. WSJ, 26 Apr. 2022 Sleep apnea is a potentially serious condition that causes people to repeatedly stop breathing during their sleep. Rebecca Joy Stanborough, SELF, 19 Apr. 2022 The Dutch healthcare giant initiated a recall last year of certain sleep-apnea and ventilator machines amid concerns that a type of foam used in the devices could degrade and release harmful, possibly cancer-causing particles. Denise Roland, WSJ, 12 Jan. 2022 Sleep apnea is a sleep disorder in which someone’s breathing repeatedly stops throughout the night, with these pauses in breathing occuring at least five times each hour1. Beth Krietsch, SELF, 5 Nov. 2021 Sleep apnea and disordered breathing can also be more common among those who are pregnant and are further reasons to avoid sleeping on the back. Washington Post, 22 Oct. 2021 Sleep apnea is not only exhausting and inconvenient ... BostonGlobe.com, 30 Sep. 2021 But Baldassari says there isn’t sufficient evidence to support myofunctional therapy as a sleep-apnea treatment, either. Christina Szalinski, The Atlantic, 12 Sep. 2021 The apnea monitor, which goes off when a baby forgets to breathe, was the loudest and most jolting; it was followed always by the rushing feet of the nurses. Mark Johnson, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, 23 Aug. 2021 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'apnea.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

First Known Use of apnea

circa 1719, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for apnea

New Latin, from a- + -pnea

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Time Traveler for apnea

Time Traveler

The first known use of apnea was circa 1719

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Statistics for apnea

Last Updated

3 May 2022

Cite this Entry

“Apnea.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/apnea. Accessed 20 May. 2022.

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More Definitions for apnea


variants: or chiefly British apnoea \ ˈap-​nē-​ə How to pronounce apnea (audio) , ap-​ˈnē-​ How to pronounce apnea (audio) \

Medical Definition of apnea

1 : transient cessation of respiration whether normal (as in hibernating animals) or abnormal (as that caused by certain drugs) — see sleep apnea
2 : asphyxia

Other Words from apnea

apneic or chiefly British apnoeic \ ap-​ˈnē-​ik How to pronounce apnea (audio) \ adjective

More from Merriam-Webster on apnea

Britannica English: Translation of apnea for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about apnea


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