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Healthcare provider contact for children with symptoms of sleep-disordered breathing: a population survey

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  17 December 2015

G Gudnadottir
Department of Otorhinolaryngology, Institution for Clinical Sciences, Sahlgrenska Academy at Gothenburg University, Sahlgrenska University Hospital, Gothenburg, Sweden
A Ehnhage
Department of Clinical Sciences, Intervention and Technology, Division Otorhinolaryngology, Karolinska Institutet, Sweden Nacka Närsjukhus Proxima, Stockholm, Sweden
M Bende
Department of Otorhinolaryngology, Central Hospital, Skövde, Sweden
M Andersson
Department of Otorhinolaryngology, Head & Neck Surgery, Skåne University Hospital, Lund and Malmö, Sweden
A Cervin
Royal Brisbane & Women's Hospital, School of Medicine, University of Queensland, Australia
L O Cardell
Division of ENT Diseases, Department of Clinical Sciences, Intervention and Technology, Karolinska Institutet, Huddinge, Sweden
J Hellgren*
Department of Otorhinolaryngology, Institution for Clinical Sciences, Sahlgrenska Academy at Gothenburg University, Sahlgrenska University Hospital, Gothenburg, Sweden
Address for correspondence: Dr J Hellgren, Department of Otorhinolaryngology, Head and Neck Surgery, Gröna Stråket 9, Sahlgrenska University Hospital, SE-413 45 Göteborg, Sweden Fax: +46 31 82 56 79 E-mail:



Symptoms of sleep-disordered breathing in children, such as frequent snoring, apnoea and choking, may lead to health problems if untreated. The caregiver's level of awareness of these symptoms has been poorly studied. This study aimed to study healthcare provider contact related to sleep-disordered breathing symptoms in a population of children aged 0–11 years.


A total of 1320 children were randomly selected from a national database that included all children living in Sweden. Caregivers answered a questionnaire about sleep-disordered breathing symptoms during the last month and healthcare provider contact related to these symptoms.


A total of 754 answers were received. The prevalence of sleep-disordered breathing symptoms was 4.8 per cent. Of this subgroup, 69 per cent had not been in contact with a healthcare provider regarding their symptoms.


This study shows that sleep-disordered breathing in children is underestimated and that there is a need to increase caregiver and healthcare provider awareness of sleep-disordered breathing in children.

Main Articles
Copyright © JLO (1984) Limited 2015 

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