Central Sleep Apnea (CSA): How We Treat

How is CSA treated?

An infant with Sleep Apnea is treated in the Breathing Institute

Your doctor will recommend treatments depending on the specific cause of your child's CSA. If prematurity is the cause, supplemental oxygen is often the treatment until the child's breathing matures. A second sleep study is often done as the child grows to reassess breathing and to make sure the child is outgrowing CSA.

For children who have neurological problems causing the CSA, the treatment is often to assist breathing at night with oxygen. Continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) or Bi-level positive air pressure (PAP) therapy can help a child regulate their breathing, by delivering air pressure through a nasal mask while they are sleeping.

Some children have trouble learning to wear a mask all night. Those children may need assistance to tolerate PAP therapy. We have a desensitization program for these patients to help them learn to sleep with PAP therapy.

Why choose Children's Hospital Colorado for your child's CSA?

The Children's Hospital Colorado Sleep Team is an excellent resource for treating children and adolescent with CSA. Or providers are known internationally for their expertise in sleep research and sleep treatments. The team is made up of sleep specialists trained in different aspects of sleep treatments, including:

  • Sleep physicians who specialize in children's breathing issues and children's ear-nose-and throat problems
  • A sleep-specialized psychologist
  • Two sleep-specialized nurse practitioners
  • A sleep-specialized respiratory therapist
  • A dedicated sleep nurse

We often coordinate care with other specialists, like neurologists, and primary care physicians involved in each family's treatment. Most importantly, we have very caring staff members who are willing to listen to families and "go the extra mile" to improve sleep and optimize development.