Prevalence of central apneic events in children with obstructive sleep apnea

  Researchers at the Children’s Medical Center of Dallas designed a study to determine the prevalence of central sleep apnea (CSA) and the effect of tonsillectomy and adenoidectomy on CSA in children with obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) following surgery. They presented the results at Triological Society 2013, held April 2013 in Orlando. They performed a retrospective review of the charts of children who underwent tonsillectomy and adenoidectomy for obstructive sleep apnea to obtain information on history and physical examination, past medical history, polysomnogram findings, and surgical management. The number of central apneic events and central apnea index were evaluated before and after tonsillectomy and adenoidectomy. 

  They identified a total of 667 children (mean age 5.8, range 1-18) with polysomnogram-documented obstructive sleep apnea. CSA events were found to have occurred in 609 of 667 (8%) patients. The number of CSA events ranged from one to 121 (9.1); the CSA index ranged from 0.1 to 31.9 events/hour. According to the authors, in 104 patients who had postoperative polysomnogram, the number of CSA events after surgery (4.9) was less than the number of CSA events before surgery (9.4) (P <0.001). And the CSA index after surgery (0.9) was less than the CSA index before surgery (2.4) (P <0.01).

   "Central apneic events and central sleep apnea occur in children with obstructive sleep apnea," the researchers concluded. The number of central apneic events and central sleep apnea index improves after surgical treatment.