The effects of lowering blood pressure (BP) by hydralazine (HY) (2 mg/kg) on spontaneous (SA) and post-sigh (PSA) sleep apneas have been studied in spontaneously hypertensive (SHR) rats by monitoring their respiration and sleep by the EEG for 6 hours. Normotensive Wistar-Kyoto (WKY) rats, from which the SHR rat strain was derived, were used as an appropriate control. The SHR rats had more SA (p < 0.02) and PSA (p < 0.0001) apneas/hour than WKY rats during nonrapid eye movement sleep and their mean BP was higher by 40 mm Hg (p < 0.0001) than WKY rats. Administration of HY to SHR rats equalized their BP with the arterial pressure of WKY rats and reduced the SA and the PSA apneas/hour to equivalence with WKY normotensive rats. These results demonstrate that even in the context of lifelong hypertension, acute normalization of BP significantly reduces sleep apneas in rats. They further suggest that improved management of BP may be clinical benefit to patients with apnea who have long-standing hypertension.