Predicting sleep-disordered breathing in patients with cystic fibrosis

Chest. 2001 Oct;120(4):1239-45. doi: 10.1378/chest.120.4.1239.


Study objectives: To examine predictors of sleep-disordered breathing in patients with cystic fibrosis (CF) and moderate-to-severe lung disease using a comprehensive evaluation of both sleep and daytime function.

Design: Cross-sectional analysis of sleep studies, lung function, respiratory muscle strength, and evening and morning arterial blood gas measurements in patients with stable CF. A questionnaire addressing sleep quality was administered. Forward stepwise regression analysis was used to identify the parameters that best predict sleep-related desaturation, hypercapnia, and respiratory disturbance.

Setting: Sleep investigation unit and lung function laboratory.

Patients: Thirty-two patients with CF and FEV(1) < 65% predicted, in stable clinical condition. Patients were aged 27 +/- 8 years (mean +/- 1 SD) with FEV(1) of 36 +/- 10% predicted, evening PaO(2) of 68 +/- 8 mm Hg, and PaCO(2) of 43 +/- 5 mm Hg.

Results: Evening PaO(2) (p < 0.0001) and morning PaCO(2) (p < 0.01) were predictive of the average minimum oxyhemoglobin saturation per 30-s epoch of sleep (r(2) = 0.74; p < 0.0001). Evening PaO(2) (p < 0.001) was predictive of the rise in transcutaneous carbon dioxide (TcCO(2)) seen from non-rapid eye movement (NREM) to rapid eye movement (REM) sleep (r(2) = 0.37; p < 0.001). In addition, there was some relationship between expiratory respiratory muscle strength and the REM respiratory disturbance index (r(2) = 0.22; p < 0.01).

Conclusion: Evening PaO(2) was found to contribute significantly to the ability to predict both sleep-related desaturation and the rise in TcCO(2) from NREM sleep to REM sleep in this subgroup of patients with CF.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Blood Gas Analysis
  • Circadian Rhythm / physiology
  • Cross-Sectional Studies
  • Cystic Fibrosis / diagnosis*
  • Cystic Fibrosis / physiopathology
  • Female
  • Forced Expiratory Volume / physiology
  • Humans
  • Lung / physiopathology
  • Male
  • Oxyhemoglobins / metabolism
  • Polysomnography
  • Sleep Apnea, Obstructive / diagnosis*
  • Sleep Apnea, Obstructive / physiopathology
  • Sleep Stages / physiology


  • Oxyhemoglobins