Objective To verify association between left ventricular (LV) mass and thickness and the presence of significant nocturnal hypoxemia in patients with COPD with mild diurnal hypoxemia. Methods A cross-sectional study carried out in clinically stable outpatients with COPD and mild hypoxemia (oxygen saturation ≥90 to ≤94%, identified by noninvasive oximetry) in a clinic specialized in the treatment of respiratory diseases in Goiânia-GO. All patients were submitted to clinical evaluation, spirometry, polysomnography, echocardiography, arterial blood gas analysis, 6-minute walk test and chest X-ray. Results Patients with significant nocturnal hypoxemia had echocardiographic parameters associated with increase of LV musculature when compared to patients with mild nocturnal hypoxemia. The LV volume/mass ratio was significantly lower in the group with significant nocturnal hypoxemia (ratio 0.64 ± 0.13 versus 0.72 ± 0.12, p = 0.04), the thickness diastolic diameter of the interventricular septum and the diastolic thickness of the LV posterior wall were significantly higher in this group (9.7 ± 0.92 versus 9.1 ± 0.90 p = 0.03), (9.7 ± 1.0 versus 8.9 ± 1.0, p = 0.01. The time in REM sleep with saturation below 85% significantly predicted septum thickness (adjustment for BMI, age and mean blood pressure, r2 = 0.20; p = 0.046). Conclusion We observed association between severe REM sleep hypoxemia and echocardiographic parameters indicating increased LV mass in individuals with COPD and significant nocturnal hypoxemia. This suggests that this subgroup of individuals may benefit from an echocardiographic evaluation of the left ventricle.