Parental perceptions of sleep disturbances and sleep-disordered breathing in children with Down syndrome


Division of Respiratory Diseases, Children’s Hospital Boston, 300 Longwood Avenue, Boston, MA 02115, USA.



Children with Down syndrome (DS) have increased difficulty initiating and maintaining sleep (DIMS), excessive daytime sleepiness (EDS), and obstructive sleep apnea (OSA). As part of a quality improvement initiative, parents of children enrolled in the Children’s Hospital Boston Down Syndrome Program were surveyed about their child’s sleep and breathing patterns while asleep.


An anonymous Internet-based questionnaire was used in the study.


The completion rate was 46.5% (255/548). DIMS and EDS were frequently/almost always present in more than half the children. Among parents unconcerned about their child’s breathing, 11.8% witnessed apnea and 4.2% gasping/choking more than once monthly. Parents of children status post adenotonsillectomy (AT) reported witnessed apnea (47.5%), gasping/choking (28.9%) more than once monthly.


There is room for improved screening of sleep disturbances, OSA in children with DS. The high frequency of persistence of OSA following AT should prompt for continued screening following AT.

Clin Pediatr (Phila). 2011 Feb;50(2):121-5. Epub 2010 Nov 22.

Randy Clare

Randy Clare

Randy Clare brings to Sleep Scholar more than 25 years of extensive knowledge and experience in the sleep field. He has held numerous management positions throughout his career and has demonstrated a unique view of the alternate care diagnostic and therapy model. Mr. Clare's extensive sleep industry experience assists Sleep Scholar in providing current, relevant, data-proven information on sleep diagnostics and sleep therapies that are effective for the treatment of sleep disorders.

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