Background: Sleep disordered breathing (SDB) is an umbrella term used to describe a range of breathing disorders of sleep that include obstructive sleep apnea (OSA), central apnea, periodic breathing, and sleep-related hypoventilation. SDB in children is not the same as in adults. The prevalence of OSA in children has been reported to be between 1% and 3%. Essentially, the symptoms, assessment, diagnosis, treatment, and sequelae are different. Children with SD can manifest a continuum from simple snoring and upper airway resistance syndrome (UARS) to OSA with secondary growth impairment, neurocognitive deficits, and less often cardiovascular sequelae.
Methodology: The study was conducted among school children aged 7-15 years old. Parents and/or guardians were asked to answer the Pediatric Sleep Questionnaire (PSQ) for absence or presence of moderate to severe sleep disordered breathing. History taking and physical examination for the size of the tonsils based on Modified Mallampati Scoring was done. Weight and height was measured as well as the waist and neck circumference. The principal investigator administered the questionnaire to the guardian/parent. A cut off score of 8 defines the presence or absence of sleep breathing disorder.
Results: A total of 81 children were enrolled in the study and 50.6% (n=41) have sleep disordered breathing based on the PSQ. Of the 41 children with SDB, 61% (n=25) are males. The difference in the weight and BMI among those with and without SDB is statistically significant with a p value of 0.043 and 0.020 respectively. There is no significant difference as to the height, neck and waist circumference among the study population. The Modified Mallampati scores among the two groups are also statistically insignificant (p value= 0.347). However, 53.66% of patients with SDB have a Modified Mallampati score of 3. All measured parameters contribute to the development of SDB, but only BMI has a significant association with SDB
(p= 0.026). For every unit increase in BMI, the odds of having OSA also increase by 11%.
Conclusion: In this study, weight and BMI are significantly associated with SBD and that the risk of having the disease increases by 11.0% per unit increase in BMI. There is no positive correlation of SBD with height, Mallampati score, neck and waist circumference among the study population.