Induced sputum inflammatory measures correlate with disease severity in children with obstructive sleep apnoea.


OBJECTIVE To establish the association between airway inflammation and severity of obstructive sleep apnoea (OSA) in children. METHODS Consecutive children presenting with symptoms suggestive of OSA were recruited. They completed a sleep apnoea symptom questionnaire, underwent physical examination, spirometry, sputum induction and an overnight polysomnography. Adequate sputum contained <50% squamous epithelial cells, and OSA was diagnosed if the obstructive apnoea index was >1. RESULTS 73 children with a median (interquartile range (IQR)) age of 11.3 (10.0-13.2) years were recruited. There were 21 girls and the median body mass index of the group was 24.0 (18.0-27.0) kg/m2. The most common presenting symptoms were habitual snoring, mouth breathing and prone sleeping position. Sputum induction was successful in 43 (59%) children, of whom 14 were found to have OSA. Children with OSA had significantly greater percentage sputum neutrophil than those without OSA (18.5 (IQR 8.0-42.0) v 4 (IQR 3.0-11.3), p = 0.006). On multiple regression analysis, percentage sputum neutrophil was significantly associated with OSA (odds ratio = 1.1, p = 0.013). CONCLUSION Children with OSA had airway inflammation characterised by a marked increase in neutrophils. Further studies are needed to confirm these findings and to better define the downstream cellular interactions and molecular pathogenesis in childhood OSA.

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@article{Li2007InducedSI, title={Induced sputum inflammatory measures correlate with disease severity in children with obstructive sleep apnoea.}, author={Albert Li and Emily C.W. Hung and Tony Tsang and Jian Yin and H K So and Eric M. C. Wong and Tai-fai Fok and Pak-cheung Ng}, journal={Thorax}, year={2007}, volume={62 1}, pages={75-9} }