Perinatal risk factors associated with the obstructive sleep apnea syndrome in school-aged children born preterm

Ignacio E. Tapia, Justine Shults, Lex W. Doyle, Gillian M. Nixon, Christopher M. Cielo, Joel Traylor, Carole L. Marcus, Caffeine for Apnea of Prematurity-Sleep Study Group

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31 Citations (Scopus)


Study Objectives: The obstructive sleep apnea syndrome (OSAS) is more prevalent in ex-preterm children compared to the general pediatric population. However, it is unknown whether OSAS in ex-preterm children is associated with specific perinatal risk factors. This multicenter cohort study aimed to determine perinatal factors associated with OSAS at school age. Methods: 197 ex-preterm (500-1,250 g) children aged 5-12 y who participated as neonates in a double-blind, randomized clinical trial of caffeine versus placebo (Caffeine for Apnea of Prematurity) underwent comprehensive ambulatory polysomnography. A negative binomial regression model was used to identify perinatal risk factors associated with OSAS. Results: 19 children had OSAS (9.6%). Chorioamnionitis and multiple gestation were positively associated with OSAS with P values of 0.014 and 0.03, respectively. Maternal white race (P = 0.047) and maternal age (P = 0.002) were negatively associated with OSAS. Other risk factors, such as birth weight, Apgar score at 5 min, antenatal corticosteroids, delivery route, and sex were not significant. Conclusions: OSAS is very frequent, and is associated with chorioamnionitis and multiple gestation in ex-preterm children. Those born to older white mothers appear to be protected. We speculate that the former may be due to systemic inflammation and the latter to a higher socio-economic status.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)737-742
Number of pages6
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 1 Apr 2016


  • OSAS
  • Preterm
  • Risk factors
  • School-aged

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