Treatment of obstructive sleep apnoea using nasal CPAP in children with craniofacial dysostoses

Childs Nerv Syst. 1996 Nov;12(11):713-9. doi: 10.1007/BF00366156.


We studied a group of children (aged 2.2-15 years) with craniofacial dysostosis and obstructive sleep apnoea to assess the use of nasal continuous positive airway pressure (n-CPAP) as a palliative form of treatment. A variable period of time was allowed for acclimatisation to n-CPAP (1 day to 2 months), depending on the patient. Patients were then admitted for their first CPAP trial. Baseline breathing difficulty and the effectiveness of n-CPAP were assessed by respiratory sleep studies. Successful results were obtained with n-CPAP in five of the eight patients, with marked clinical and polygraphic improvements of the respiratory pattern immediately after n-CPAP was established. Of the remaining three cases, one child needed a prolonged period of acclimatisation to the n-CPAP system, one was withdrawn from the study, and one failed to respond to n-CPAP and was found to have complete blockage of the upper airways as a result of enlarged adenoids. Our results confirm that n-CPAP can be tolerated even by young patients and can be effective, and that it may be a useful alternative palliative treatment for obstructive sleep apnoea in children with craniofacial syndromes.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Brain / pathology
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Craniofacial Dysostosis / therapy*
  • Female
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Humans
  • Magnetic Resonance Imaging
  • Male
  • Oxygen / blood
  • Palliative Care
  • Polysomnography
  • Positive-Pressure Respiration*
  • Sleep Apnea Syndromes / therapy*


  • Oxygen