Smartphone videos to predict the severity of obstructive sleep apnoea

Rahul J. Thomas, Samuel Dalton, Katharine Harman, Julie Thacker, Rosemary S.C. Horne, Margot J. Davey, Gillian M. Nixon

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3 Citations (Scopus)


Objective: Diagnosis of obstructive sleep apnoea (OSA) is made on overnight polysomnography (PSG). Given the widespread availability of smartphone video technology, we aimed to develop and test a standardised scoring system for smartphone videos and compare these scores to PSG results. Methods: Children aged 1-16 years undergoing PSG for suspected OSA were included. Parents were asked to take 1-2 min videos of the breathing they were concerned about. Videos were scored using a newly developed and tested tool on five components: inspiratory obstructive noises (1-4), presence of obstructive events (0-1), increased work of breathing (0-1), mouth breathing (0-1) and neck extension (0-1). Video scores and the Obstructive Apnoea Hypopnoea Index (OAHI) were compared using Spearman correlation. Sensitivity, specificity, positive predictive value and negative predictive value were calculated for different cut-off scores to achieve the best results. Results: Videos from 43 children (28 men (65.1%), median age 5.7 years (range 2.6-14.0 years), median OAHI 3.8/hour (range 0-82 events/hour) were included. Nine children (20.9%) had a video score of <3, all of whom had an OAHI of ≤5 events/hour. For a video score of ≥3, sensitivity was 100%; specificity was 36%; positive predictive value was 53%; and negative predictive value 100% for moderate to severe OSA (OAHI>5 events/hour). Conclusion: We have developed and validated a simple clinical tool (the Monash Obstructive Sleep Apnoea Video Score) to quantify abnormalities in breathing seen on short video recordings made on a smartphone. A low score rules out moderate-severe OSA and may be valuable in the triage of children with symptoms of OSA.

Original languageEnglish
Article number320752
Number of pages5
JournalArchives of Disease in Childhood
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2022


  • sleep
  • technology

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