Allergy Asthma Respir Dis.  2017 Jan;5(1):3-7. 10.4168/aard.2017.5.1.3.

Upper airway and obstructive sleep apnea in children

Affiliations
  • 1Department of Pediatrics, CHA Bundang Medical Center, CHA University School of Medicine, Seongnam, Korea. hyemijee@gmail.com

Abstract

Obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) is characterized by a disorder of breathing with prolonged partial and/or complete airway obstruction which causes frequent arousal during sleep. The prevalence of OSAS is approximately 2%-3.5% in children. It is mainly caused by enlarged tonsils and adenoids. Obesity, craniofacial abnormality, and neuromuscular disease are also relevant predisposing factors. Snoring is the most common presenting complaint in children with OSA, but the clinical presentation varies according to age. The pathogenesis of OSA is complex and involved in multifactorial, relative roles of anatomic and neurohumoral factors. The role of the nose is considered a component of the pathophysiology of OSA. It is unlikely that the first manifestation of OSA is intermittent snoring with nasal obstruction, often considered a coincidental finding. Childhood OSA should be diagnosed and treated, if clinically suspected, because various symptoms, signs, and consequences can be improved with proper management. Adenotonsillectomy is the first-line treatment modality in pediatric OSA with adenotonsillar hypertrophy. In addition, treatment of allergic rhinitis, nonallergic rhinitis, and other structural problems of the nasal cavity, if it is needed, may be included in the treatment of OSA.

Keyword

Obstructive sleep apnea; Snoring; Nose; Child

MeSH Terms

Adenoids
Airway Obstruction
Arousal
Causality
Child*
Craniofacial Abnormalities
Humans
Hypertrophy
Nasal Cavity
Nasal Obstruction
Neuromuscular Diseases
Nose
Obesity
Palatine Tonsil
Prevalence
Respiration
Rhinitis
Rhinitis, Allergic
Sleep Apnea, Obstructive*
Snoring
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