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J Pediatr. 2001 Jun;138(6):838-44.

Efficacy of fluticasone nasal spray for pediatric obstructive sleep apnea.

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Department of Pediatrics, McGill University/Montreal Children's Hospital, 2300 Tupper St., Montreal, Quebec, Canada H3H 1P3.



We tested the hypothesis that a 6-week course of a nasal glucocorticoid spray would decrease the severity of obstructive sleep apnea in children with adenotonsillar hypertrophy.


We conducted a randomized, triple-blind, placebocontrolled, parallel-group trial of nasal fluticasone propionate versus placebo in 25 children aged 1 to 10 years with obstructive sleep apnea proven on polysomnography. The primary outcome was the change from baseline in the frequency of mixed and obstructive apneas and hypopneas.


Thirteen children received fluticasone, and 12 received placebo. The mixed/obstructive apnea/hypopnea index decreased from 10.7 +/- 2.6 (SE) to 5.8 +/- 2.2 in the fluticasone group but increased from 10.9 +/- 2.3 to 13.1 +/- 3.6 in the placebo group, P =.04. The mixed/obstructive apnea/hypopnea index decreased in 12 of 13 subjects treated with fluticasone versus 6 of 12 treated with placebo, P =.03. The frequencies of hemoglobin desaturation and respiratory movement/arousals also decreased more in the fluticasone group. Changes from baseline in tonsillar size, adenoidal size, and symptom score were not significantly different between groups.


Nasal fluticasone decreased the frequency of mixed and obstructive apneas and hypopneas, suggesting that topical corticosteroids may be helpful in ameliorating pediatric obstructive sleep apnea.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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