Obstructive sleep-related breathing disorders (SRBDs) such as obstructive sleep apnea are common but usually undiagnosed among children. Methods to help identify SRBDs, or screen for high risk for SRBDs, without the expense of polysomnography, could greatly facilitate clinical and epidemiological research.
Researchers at the University of Michigan have developed a questionnaire that can assist in screening for symptoms of pediatric sleep disorders, including sleep-related breathing disorders such as obstructive sleep apnea. The parent-completed Pediatric Sleep Questionnaire contains embedded within it the items that comprise two component scales, for SRBDs and restless legs/periodic leg movements. These scales were designed and validated for use in research on these childhood sleep disorders. A publication in Sleep Medicine in 2000, along with another in Archives of Otolaryngology – Head & Neck Surgery in 2007, provided validity and reliability data for the SRBD scale. The SRBD scale includes subscales – for snoring, sleepiness, and behavior – that also have published data on validity and reliability. For example, the 4-item sleepiness scale is the only questionnaire-based scale, to the investigators’ knowledge, that has been validated against results of the Multiple Sleep Latency Test, a gold-standard sleep laboratory assessment for daytime sleepiness (Sleep 2006). The SRBD scale contains 22 items and fits on one page. It is designed for use in screening for SRBD and associated symptom-constructs in clinical research when polysomnography is not feasible. However, neither the SRBD scale nor any other similar instrument to our knowledge has been formally approved, as a result of evidence-based medicine, for application to the care of individual patients. Use of the PSQ, SRBD scale, and subscales in such a manner can only be undertaken at the discretion and responsibility of the clinician involved.
- Screening of children for symptoms of obstructive sleep apnea (Sleep Medicine 2000)
- Screening for SRBDs or associated symptom-constructs in clinical or epidemiological research when polysomnography is not feasible
- Subjective assessment of daytime sleepiness in children
- Published validity data (Archives of Otolaryngology - Head and Neck Surgery 2007) suggesting that the SRBD scale predicts hyperactivity and sleepiness in children with sleep apnea and response to treatment - as well or better than do laboratory-based sleep studies
- Widely used in published research studies from around the world
- Has been translated into several other languages