The American Academy of Otolaryngology- Head and Neck Surgery (AAOHNS) recently came out with guidelines for sleep studies for children. It is well established that most children with snoring and witnessed apnea can be “cured” by andenotonsillectomy, but there are some exceptions to the rule.

The AAOHNS noted 5 guidelines for those who may be the exception:

1. any child with complex medical conditions (obesity, Down Syndrome, sickle cell, etc.).
2. any child where symptom severity does not correspond with physical exam.
3. sleep study results should be shared with all involved in their pre and post operative care.
4. children with documented apnea under the age of 3, or any child with severe documented apnea (of any age) should be considered for overnight observation in hospital
5. sleep studies should be done in a laboratory setting, if possible.

Don’t hesitate to ask your pediatrician or ENT about these guidelines, and if your child fits into this protocol. Chances are he/she doesn’t, but it never hurts to ask!

source: Supp 1 July 2011 Oto/HNS journal

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