Association of Adenotonsillectomy With Blood Pressure Among Hypertensive and Nonhypertensive Children With Obstructive Sleep Apnea

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Abstract

Importance

Hypertension in childhood may continue into adulthood and lead to adverse cardiovascular outcomes. Evidence suggests that adenotonsillectomy for childhood obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) may be associated with blood pressure (BP) improvement. However, how adenotonsillectomy is associated with BP in hypertensive and nonhypertensive children with OSA remains unclear.

Objective

To investigate disparities in BP changes after adenotonsillectomy in hypertensive and nonhypertensive children with OSA.

Design, Setting, and Participants

From January 1, 2010, to April 30, 2016, children (aged <18 years) with symptoms of OSA treated at National Taiwan University Hospital were enrolled in this retrospective case series study.

Interventions

Children underwent polysomnography for diagnosis of OSA (apnea-hypopnea index >1). All children with OSA underwent adenotonsillectomy.

Main Outcomes and Measures

Preoperative and postoperative overnight polysomnographic data were obtained. Office BP was measured in a sleep center before (nocturnal BP) and after (morning) polysomnography.

Results

A total of 240 nonobese children (mean [SD] age, 7.3 [3.0] years; 160 [66.7%] male and 80 [33.3%] female) with OSA were recruited. Postoperatively, the apnea-hypopnea index decreased significantly from 12.1 to 1.7 events per hour (95% CI of difference, −12.3 to −8.4 events per hour). The whole cohort had a significant decrease in nocturnal diastolic BP (66.9 to 64.5 mm Hg; 95% CI of difference, −4.1 to −0.7 mm Hg) and morning diastolic BP (66.9 to 64.4 mm Hg; 95% CI of difference, −4.2 to −0.8 mm Hg). The number (percentage) of patients with diastolic BP in the greater than 95th percentile decreased significantly nocturnally (48 [20.0%] to 33 [13.8%]; 95% CI of difference, −12.1% to −0.4%) and in the morning (52 [21.7%] to 34 [14.2%]; 95% CI of difference, −13.6% to −1.4%). Postoperatively, hypertensive children had a significant decrease in all BP measures, including mean (SD) nocturnal and morning systolic BP (nocturnal: 107.5 [8.6] mm Hg; morning: 106.0 [9.4] mm Hg), systolic BP index (nocturnal: −4.3 [8.6]; morning: −5.7 [8.5]), diastolic BP (nocturnal: 65.1 [11.5] mm Hg; morning: 64.4 [10.1] mm Hg), and diastolic BP index (nocturnal: −10.7 [17.3]; morning: −11.6 [15.7]), whereas the nonhypertensive group had a slight increase in nocturnal systolic BP (103.8 to 105.9 mm Hg; 95% CI of difference, 0.4-3.9 mm Hg). A generalized estimating equation model for subgroup comparisons revealed that children with hypertension, compared with those without, had greater improvement in all BP measures.

Conclusions and Relevance

Hypertensive children with OSA had a significant improvement in BP after adenotonsillectomy. Hypertensive children with OSA should be screened and treated by adenotonsillectomy because proper treatment not only eases OSA symptoms but also potentially prevents future cardiovascular and end-organ disease.

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