Two recent studies link sleep apnea with a higher risk of cancer. Sleep apnea is a disorder in which the throat muscles collapse and choke off the airway causing a gasping for breathe. Sleep apnea causes snoring, fatigue and severe breathing pauses during sleep. Sleep apnea has been linked to cardiovascular disease, diabetes and obesity. Now the link to cancer is yet another reason to have this disorder treated. Approximately 28 million Americans have some type of sleep apnea, some diagnosed, some not. Treatments for sleep apnea include the continuous positive airway pressure device (CPAP) to keep the airway open at night or a mouthpiece inserted into the mouth to keep the jaw forward and the airway open. Another option is surgery to remove excess tissue that may block the airway.