Childhood Obstructive Sleep Apnea

R Dayal, Pankaj Kumar, Neha Garg


Obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) is a common condition in childhood and can result in
severe complications if left untreated. It is showing a rising trend in India. A significant
association with obesity has been observed; however, some children with enlarged
tonsils and/or adenoids may even be underweight. The patient usually presents with
snoring and other respiratory problems like mouth breathing, choking and gasping
episodes in night. Poor school performance and neurocognitive deficits have been
reported. Pulmonary hypertension and cor pulmonale are seen in severe cases. Besides
the history and clinical examination, for definitive diagnosis an overnight
polysomnographic evaluation is the gold standard. In all cases, the specific treatment
ranges from simple lifestyle modifications and medications to surgeries like
adenotonsillectomy. Early diagnosis is vital.
Key words: Childhood OSA, Obesity, adenotonsillar hypertrophy

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