TEHRAN (Tasnim) – The White House confirmed Wednesday that US President Joe Biden has recently started using a CPAP machine to address his sleep apnea.
The news came after indentations from the machine’s straps were noticed on both sides of his face as he left the White House Wednesday morning, CNN reported.
The marks were also visible during a Monday event at the White House, where he was promoting the growth of high-speed internet.
“Since 2008, the president has disclosed his history with sleep apnea in thorough medical reports. He used a CPAP machine last night, which is common for people with that history,” White House spokesperson Andrew Bates said Wednesday, The New York Daily News reported.
Another official source claimed that Biden began using the device in the past few weeks to enhance the quality of his sleep.
As the oldest president in US history at the age of 80, Biden has had a history of sleep apnea. Medical records from 2008 indicated his recurring issue with the sleep disorder.
In 2019, his doctor’s health record mentioned that sleep apnea “has been considered, but his symptoms have improved significantly after his sinus and nasal passage surgeries.”
Sleep apnea is a disorder characterized by repetitive interruptions in breathing, and affects approximately 30 million people in the United States, according to the American Medical Association.
A CPAP machine, which acronym stands for Continuous Positive Airway Pressure, “uses mild air pressure to keep breathing airways open while you sleep,” says the National Institutes of Health.
Following Biden’s physical in 2021, White House physician Dr. Kevin O’Connor noted “increasing frequency and severity of ‘throat clearing’ and coughing during speaking engagements” for the president, as well as a stiffer gait.
However, Biden’s most recent physical examination earlier this year did not specifically mention sleep apnea as one of the conditions he suffers from, and his exams have consistently indicated his fitness to serve in office.