Is obstructive sleep apnea associated with ADHD?

Nagy A. Youssef, Margaret Ege, Sohair S. Angly, Jennifer L. Strauss, Christine E. Marx

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

32 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

BACKGROUND: It has been suggested that obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) may result in symptoms similar to those experienced in attention-deficit/ hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). Because this may have important public health implications, we reviewed the literature regarding this association, with a focus on interventional studies examining the effect of OSA treatment on change in ADHD symptoms. METHODS: We performed a systematic literature search of PubMed, along with other major databases, for interventional studies published between January 1966 and June 2010 that examined the effect of OSA treatment on ADHD, which resulted in 6 studies. The literature on the prevalence of ADHD symptoms in OSA and vice versa was also reviewed. RESULTS: Attentional deficits have been reported in up to 95% of OSA patients. In full syndromal ADHD, a high incidence (20% to 30%) of OSA has been shown. All 6 interventional studies reported improvements in behavior, inattention, and overall ADHD after treatment of OSA. CONCLUSIONS: OSA may contribute to ADHD symptomatology in a subset of patients diagnosed with ADHD (DSM-IV criteria). Treatment of OSA appears to have favorable effects on ADHD symptoms. Controlled trials and epidemiologic investigations will be required to better understand these relationships, as well as their diagnostic and prognostic implications.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)213-224
Number of pages12
JournalAnnals of Clinical Psychiatry
Volume23
Issue number3
StatePublished - Aug 1 2011

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Obstructive Sleep Apnea
Attention Deficit Disorder with Hyperactivity
Therapeutics
PubMed
Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders
Public Health
Databases
Incidence

Keywords

  • ADHD
  • Attention
  • Obstructive sleep apnea
  • Sleep apnea
  • Sleep disorders
  • Sleep-disordered breathing

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychiatry and Mental health

Cite this

Youssef, N. A., Ege, M., Angly, S. S., Strauss, J. L., & Marx, C. E. (2011). Is obstructive sleep apnea associated with ADHD? Annals of Clinical Psychiatry, 23(3), 213-224.

Is obstructive sleep apnea associated with ADHD? / Youssef, Nagy A.; Ege, Margaret; Angly, Sohair S.; Strauss, Jennifer L.; Marx, Christine E.

In: Annals of Clinical Psychiatry, Vol. 23, No. 3, 01.08.2011, p. 213-224.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Youssef, NA, Ege, M, Angly, SS, Strauss, JL & Marx, CE 2011, 'Is obstructive sleep apnea associated with ADHD?', Annals of Clinical Psychiatry, vol. 23, no. 3, pp. 213-224.
Youssef NA, Ege M, Angly SS, Strauss JL, Marx CE. Is obstructive sleep apnea associated with ADHD? Annals of Clinical Psychiatry. 2011 Aug 1;23(3):213-224.
Youssef, Nagy A. ; Ege, Margaret ; Angly, Sohair S. ; Strauss, Jennifer L. ; Marx, Christine E. / Is obstructive sleep apnea associated with ADHD?. In: Annals of Clinical Psychiatry. 2011 ; Vol. 23, No. 3. pp. 213-224.
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