Tuesday, December 8, 2009

New Way to Test for Sleep Apnea?

New research shows that diagnosing obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) in children may be as simple as giving a urine test.

The American Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine published this study. Researchers compared the urine of 120 children.

Ninety of the children snored habitually. Thirty of the children did not snore.

When the researchers compared their urine, they found an unexpected distinction. Children's urine with OSA had different protein expression than children’s urine without apnea.

In a UPI article on the study, Dr. David Gozal explained the results.

"This certainly opens the way for possible simple diagnostic screening methods in the future,” Gozal said.

According to Gozal, only 20 to 30 percent of kids who undergo overnight sleep studies because of snoring actually have OSA. So many children who snore but do not have OSA could potentially avoid taking the sleep test.

A sleep study involves sleeping overnight at a center where breathing patterns are measured.

Sleep tests are the gold standard for diagnosing sleep apnea. Diagnosis should be done at an accredited sleep center.

In November, this blog posted a guide to sleep tests. Learn more about sleep apnea.

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The Official Blog of the American Academy of Dental Sleep Medicine (AADSM) is intended as an information source only. Content of this blog should not be used for self-diagnosis or treatment, and it is not a substitute for medical care, which should be provided by the appropriate health care professional. If you suspect you have a sleep-related breathing disorder, such as obstructive sleep apnea (OSA), you should consult your personal physician or visit an AASM-accredited sleep disorders center. The AADSM, and the American Academy of Sleep Medicine, as the managing agent of the AADSM, assume no liability for the information contained on the Official Blog of the AADSM or for its use.