New screening tool to diagnose common sleep problem in children

April 1, 2014, Children's Hospital of Eastern Ontario Research Institute

Clinical investigators at the Children's Hospital of Eastern Ontario (CHEO) have developed a new screening tool to help diagnose obstructive sleep apnea in children. Their findings are published in Pediatric Pulmonology.

Evidence suggests that adults with a large neck circumference are more likely to develop (OSA), especially males. As neck circumference varies by age and sex, there have been no reference ranges to diagnose pediatric OSA up until now. The new evidence-based diagnostic tool includes reference ranges—a new pediatric growth curve—to measure and track neck circumference for boys and girls between the ages of 6 and 17.

"The gold standard test (for OSA) is still a sleep study and we would not replace that, but because the wait is so long, we needed something quick and reliable to help bump kids up the priority list or to better understand who is at the highest risk for OSA," said Dr. Sherri Katz, principal investigator at the CHEO Research Institute and assistant professor in the Faculty of Medicine at the University of Ottawa. "If left untreated, OSA sets kids up for cardiovascular disease, diabetes and other comorbid conditions down the line."

The research team discovered for children, a neck circumference measuring greater than the 95th percentile for age and sex is associated with increased risk of OSA. When examined by sex, the association was significant in males aged 12 or older, but not in females. The research team also looked at Body Mass Index (BMI), but did not find that it stands alone as a significant predictor of OSA in this group.

"In older males, as in adults, neck size is a predictor of OSA. This suggests that in adults, it is not just overall obesity, but centrally—in the trunk and neck—that predicts the risk of OSA," said Katz.

Explore further: Obstructive sleep apnea associated with less visceral fat accumulation in women than men

Related Stories

Obstructive sleep apnea associated with less visceral fat accumulation in women than men

May 22, 2013
A new study from researchers in Japan indicates that obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) is independently associated with visceral (abdominal) fat accumulation only in men, perhaps explaining gender differences in the impact of ...

Even moderate weight loss can prevent and cure obstructive sleep apnoea

February 11, 2014
(Medical Xpress)—Even a moderate weight reduction can prevent the progression of obstructive sleep apnoea (OSA), and even cure it, according to a 4-year Finish follow-up study published recently in Sleep Medicine. The study ...

Studies show how critical sleep is to maintaining a healthy lifestyle

October 15, 2013
Three new studies show just how critical it is for adults to seek treatment for a sleep illness and aim for seven to nine hours of sleep each night in order to maintain a healthy lifestyle.

Sleep apnea persisting into teens can impact life skills, study finds

June 12, 2012
The number of children with obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) declines as they enter adolescence, but the teen years can be a devastating trial of behavior and learning problems for kids with persistent OSA, new research shows.

Predicting cardiovascular events in sleep apnea

February 4, 2014
Obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) generally is associated with increased risk for cardiovascular (CV) disease. OSA is usually measured using the apnea-hypopnea index (AHI), the number of times that breathing pauses or severely ...

Researchers identify a potential new risk for sleep apnea: Asthma

May 19, 2013
Researchers at the University of Wisconsin have identified a potential new risk factor for obstructive sleep apnea: asthma. Using data from the National Institutes of Health (Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute)-funded Wisconsin ...

Recommended for you

Baby brains help infants figure it out before they try it out

January 17, 2018
Babies often amaze their parents when they seemingly learn new skills overnight—how to walk, for example. But their brains were probably prepping for those tasks long before their first steps occurred, according to researchers.

NeuroNext biomarker study explores natural history of infantile-onset SMA

January 9, 2018
Research led by The Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center to define the natural history of infantile-onset spinal muscular atrophy (SMA) has been "critical" to accelerate the development of effective therapies and hasten ...

No link between childhood lead levels, later criminality

December 27, 2017
(HealthDay)— Exposure to higher levels of lead during early childhood can affect neurological development—but does that mean affected kids are doomed to delinquency?

Early puberty in girls may take mental health toll

December 26, 2017
(HealthDay)—A girl who gets her first menstrual period early in life—possibly as young as 7—has a greater risk for developing depression and antisocial behaviors that last at least into her 20s, a new study suggests.

Technology not taking over children's lives despite screen-time increase

December 21, 2017
With children spending increasing amounts of time on screen-based devices, there is a common perception that technology is taking over their lives, to the detriment and exclusion of other activities. However, new Oxford University ...

Higher blood sugar in early pregnancy raises baby's heart-defect risk

December 15, 2017
Higher blood sugar early in pregnancy raises the baby's risk of a congenital heart defect, even among mothers who do not have diabetes, according to a study led by researchers at the Stanford University School of Medicine.

0 comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.