Institute’s Lefteroff Fund sponsors discussion on sleep-disordered breathing, a “monster public health problem”

by | Mar 2, 2017 | Education, Fogarty Innovation, Thought Leadership

To honor the legacy and contributions of Tracy Lefteroff, each year the Lefteroff Fund, one of the programs at the Institute, sponsors a session of the Stanford Byers Center Biodesign’s “From the Innovator’s Workbench” speakers series.

This year, Dr. Peter C. Farrell, founder and executive chairman of ResMed, shared his insight on a prevalent, chronic health condition that often goes undiagnosed or untreated: sleep-disordered breathing (SDB). This condition, which he termed “a monster of a public health problem,” includes a broad range of sleep-related conditions, the most prevalent being obstructive sleep apnea.

Approximately 50 percent of men and 23 percent of women suffer from SDB, which is associated with a broad range of health issues, including hypertension, strokes, heart arrhythmia, diabetes, work-place accidents, metabolic syndrome, depression and many more. “Unless your sleep is healthy, you can’t be healthy,” noted Dr. Farrell.

Dr. Farrell founded ResMed in 1989 to commercialize a device for treating obstructive sleep apnea. Today, the company is a global leader in respiratory management, developing award-winning medical devices and cutting-edge cloud-based software applications that better diagnose, treat and manage sleep apnea, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease and other chronic diseases.

Stanford Biodesign launched the “From the Innovator’s Workbench” speaker’s series in 2003 to provide an opportunity for members of its community and the public to learn from leading health technology innovators. The Fogarty Institute is a strong supporter of the series, which reflects our Lefteroff Fund’s mission to invest in individuals and programs that will help launch the next generation of life science companies.

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