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Clinical Investigations: SLEEP AND BREATHING |

Detection of Upper Airway Resistance Syndrome Using a Nasal Cannula/Pressure Transducer*

Matthew D. Epstein, MD, FCCP; Sheryl A. Chicoine, R-PSGT; R. Choudary Hanumara, PhD
Author and Funding Information

*From the Department of Medicine (Dr. Epstein) and Sleep Disorders Center (Dr. Epstein and Ms. Chicoine), Roger Williams Medical Center, Providence, RI; Boston University School of Medicine, Boston, MA (Dr. Epstein); Brown University School of Medicine (Dr. Epstein), Providence, RI; and Department of Computer Science and Statistics (Dr. Hanumara), University of Rhode Island, Kingston, RI.

Correspondence to: Matthew D. Epstein, MD, FCCP, 7 Powder Horn Terr, Randolph, NJ 07869



Chest. 2000;117(4):1073-1077. doi:10.1378/chest.117.4.1073
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Study objectives: To determine the diagnostic utility of a nasal cannula/pressure transducer (NC), in comparison to thermistor (TH), during routine, clinical nocturnal polysomnography (NPSG).

Design: We analyzed the respiratory arousal index (RAI) using TH (RAI-TH) or NC (RAI-NC) in patients with suspected sleep-disordered breathing (SDB).

Setting: Sleep disorders center of a university-affiliated teaching hospital.

Patients: Fifty consecutive, nonselected patients referred for evaluation of suspected SDB.

Measurements and results: Twenty patients were found to have obstructive sleep apnea/hypopnea syndrome (OSA), 25 had upper airway resistance syndrome (UARS), and 5 had primary snoring (PS). Mean RAI-NC was greater than the mean RAI-TH by 25%, 302%, and 500% in OSA, UARS, and PS, respectively. RAI-NC was ≥ 14 (mean, 25.2) in UARS and < 14 (mean, 9) in PS. Mean RAI-TH was 8.4 in UARS and 1.8 in PS, with significant overlap between the two groups.

Conclusions: NC is more sensitive than TH in detecting respiratory events during NPSG and may represent a simple, objective means to identify UARS among patients with a range of SDB.

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