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Editorials |

Pediatric Sleep Apnea: The Brain-Heart Connection

Rakesh Bhattacharjee, MD; David Gozal, MD, FCCP
Author and Funding Information

From the Sections of Pediatric Sleep Medicine and Pediatric Pulmonology, Department of Pediatrics, Pritzker School of Medicine, University of Chicago.

Correspondence to: David Gozal, MD, FCCP, Department of Pediatrics, Comer Children’s Hospital, The University of Chicago, 5721 S Maryland Ave, MC 8000, Suite K-160, Chicago, IL 60637; e-mail: dgozal@uchicago.edu


Financial/nonfinancial disclosures: The authors have reported to CHEST that no potential conflicts of interest exist with any companies/organizations whose products or services may be discussed in this article.

Funding/Support: Dr Gozal is supported by the National Institutes of Health [Grant HL-65270].

Reproduction of this article is prohibited without written permission from the American College of Chest Physicians (http://www.chestpubs.org/site/misc/reprints.xhtml).


© 2011 American College of Chest Physicians


Chest. 2011;139(5):977-979. doi:10.1378/chest.10-2803
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Extract

Over the past several decades, it has become apparent that obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) significantly elevates the risk of cardiovascular disease and associated mortality, particularly in adults.1 However, the causal relationships between OSA and cardiovascular disease have been difficult to extricate because of the confounding effects of frequently overlapping and associated conditions, such as obesity, cigarette smoking, and age. Examination of the physiologic consequences of OSA in children is obviously less likely to be contaminated by several of these confounding variables. Conversely, it was assumed that the strength of the cardiovascular signal caused by OSA would be remarkably smaller or potentially absent altogether, thereby hampering the potential signal-to-noise ratio and, as such, precluding any valid insights into the OSA-induced downstream cardiovascular alterations.

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