Eur Rev Med Pharmacol Sci 2019; 23 (1 Suppl): 15-18

DOI: 10.26355/eurrev_201903_17342

Obstructive sleep apnea syndrome in the pediatric age: the role of the pneumologist

D.M. Toraldo, L. Di Michele, M. Ralli, M. Arigliani, G.C. Passali, M. De Benedetto, D. Passali

Department of Rehabilitation, Cardiorespiratory Rehabilitation Unit, Vito Fazzi Hospital, ASL Lecce, Lecce, Italy. massimo.ralli@uniroma1.it


OBJECTIVE: This review paper aims to summarize the current state of knowledge on the role of the pneumologist in the diagnosis and respiratory treatment of children affected by obstructive Sleep Disordered Breathing (SDB).

MATERIALS AND METHODS: A literature review has been performed on the following topics: obstructive SDB and its clinical entities, indications for respiratory treatment of pediatric SDB, and Continuous Positive Airway Pressure (CPAP) and Noninvasive Positive Pressure Ventilation (NIPPV) treatment approach to obstructive SDB.

RESULTS: OSDB is related to obesity, craniofacial pathologies, neuromuscular disorders and, most commonly, oadenotonsillar hypertrophy. Adenotonsillectomy is the first-choice treatment in children with obstructive apnea secondary to adenotonsillar hypertrophy. CPAP and NIPPV are recommended in cases where Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA) persists after surgery or when surgery is contraindicated. Treatment interventions are usually implemented gradually by separately addressing each abnormality that would predispose to obstructive SDB, then reevaluating after each intervention to detect any residual disease and to assess the need for additional treatment.

CONCLUSIONS: Many pediatric patients continue to experience problems and symptoms such as hypersomnia and apnea after adenotonsillectomy and need CPAP/NIPPV treatment. Current knowledge is still incomplete, especially with regard to the mechanisms of pathogenesis of pediatric OSA, the factors affecting pediatric OSA, and the phenotypic variability of the disease. A better understanding of these aspects would contribute to the development of new therapies.

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To cite this article

D.M. Toraldo, L. Di Michele, M. Ralli, M. Arigliani, G.C. Passali, M. De Benedetto, D. Passali
Obstructive sleep apnea syndrome in the pediatric age: the role of the pneumologist

Eur Rev Med Pharmacol Sci
Year: 2019
Vol. 23 - N. 1 Suppl
Pages: 15-18
DOI: 10.26355/eurrev_201903_17342