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Nocturnal oximetry in infants with cystic fibrosis
  1. M P Villaa,
  2. J Pagania,
  3. V Lucidib,
  4. S Palamidesa,
  5. R Ronchettia
  1. aClinica Pediatrica, Università “La Sapienza”, Viale Regina Elena, 324, I-00161 Rome, Italy, bBambino Gesù Hospital, Rome, Italy
  1. Prof. Villamariapia.villa{at}


AIM To investigate whether children with cystic fibrosis under 3 years of age have disordered breathing and episodes of oxygen desaturation during sleep.

METHODS We studied 19 infants (9 boys and 10 girls) with cystic fibrosis, mean age 13.1 months (range 3–36 months) and 20 age and sex matched healthy subjects. Patients and controls underwent an overnight polysomnographic study and respiratory function testing on the following morning.

RESULTS Seven patients with ongoing respiratory tract inflammation had disordered breathing and episodes of oxygen desaturation during sleep. Pulse oximetry showed a significantly lower mean oxygen saturation (Sao 2) and a higher percentage of total sleep time spent with Sao 2 less than 93% in symptomatic children than in controls.

CONCLUSION Results suggest that infants and young children with cystic fibrosis and mild airways inflammation (rhinitis, cough, red throat) have episodes of oxygen desaturation during sleep.

  • cystic fibrosis
  • sleep
  • oxygen desaturation
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