Sleep disordered breathing and neurocognitive function in children post-adenotonsillectomy: Three year follow-up [ 2007 - 2009 ]

Also known as: Neurocognitive function in children 3 years after treatment for sleep breathing disorders

Research Grant

[Cite as]

Researchers: Prof John Kennedy (Principal investigator) ,  Dr Alfred Martin Dr Cameron Van Den Heuvel Prof Kurt Lushington

Brief description Snoring is very common and affects at least 10% of children, or an estimated 0.25 million children in Australia. It is associated with deficits in a wide range of neurocognitive areas including intelligence, memory, reasoning, learning and behaviour. We have recently studied a group of 53 snoring children both before and six months after removal of their tonsils and adenoids, to treat suspected upper airway obstruction associated with their snoring. We found that prior to surgery, intelligence, memory, reasoning, language and behaviour were significantly reduced, by up to 10% compared to 53 non-snoring control children matched by age, gender, social class and area of residence. To our great surprise, at six months after surgery we found that although sleep and behaviour improves, intelligence, memory, reasoning and language development do not. We now wish to study these same children at 3 years after tonsils and adenoids removal, as we believe that if the deficits that we described at 6 months are still present, they are likely now to be permanent. Given the degree of deficit that we have found in snoring compared to non-snoring children, even 6 months after the snoring group of children have been treated, if still present at 3 years post-surgery then it is likely that these deficits will affect the children's future learning potential and academic success. In turn, this would suggest that early identification and treatment of sleep-related upper airway obstruction is critical in preventing long-term deficits in children's daytime functioning and behaviour.

Funding Amount $AUD 266,536.68

Funding Scheme NHMRC Project Grants

Notes Standard Project Grant

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