The history of primary snoring in children: The effect of adenotonsillectomy

Adi Borovich, Yakov Sivan, Michal Greenfeld, Riva Tauman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

10 Scopus citations


Primary snoring (PS) is considered as the most benign form of sleep-disordered breathing (SDB), and treatment is usually not prescribed. Studies suggest that PS may not be as benign as had formerly been considered. We aimed to investigate the natural history of PS in children with adenotonsillar hypertrophy, and compare those who underwent adenotonsillectomy (AT) with those who did not. Material and methods: Children diagnosed with PS based on polysomnographic findings were included in the study. Information retrieved from their medical records, including medical history, physical examination, anthropometric measures, and polysomnography (PSG) results, was reviewed. A telephone interview was conducted 4-6 years following the PSG evaluation. The interview included the Pediatric Sleep Questionnaire Sleep-related Breathing Disorder (PSQ-SRBD) scale, demographics, anthropometric measures, and history of AT. Results: A total of 248 children (56% males) were studied (mean age: 5.4 ± 3.4 years). Telephone interviews were conducted 5.3 ± 1.1 years following PSG. Sixty-four children (26%) underwent AT/adenoidectomy (A) following PSG. Of the 184 children who did not undergo surgery, 62 (34%) had positive PSQ-SRBD scores five years after diagnosis. Children with PS who underwent AT had better PSQ-SRBD scores at five years post diagnosis than the nonoperated children. Conclusions: A significant proportion of children with PS persist with SDB symptoms even five years following the diagnosis. In our cohort, a considerable percentage of children with a PSG diagnosis of PS underwent AT despite non-supportive sleep study results. Surgical intervention may have beneficial effects on some children with PS. Further studies using objective measures of sleep and incorporating the effect of SDB duration are required.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)13-17
Number of pages5
JournalSleep Medicine
StatePublished - 2016
Externally publishedYes


  • Adenotonsillectomy
  • Sleep-disordered breathing
  • Snoring


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