Originally published by 2 Minute Medicine® (view original article). Reused on AccessMedicine with permission.

1. In this retrospective, cohort, control-matched study, a diagnosis of juvenile idiopathic diabetes was associated with an increased risk of developing obstructive sleep apnea.

2. Additionally, the association between sleep apnea and juvenile idiopathic arthritis was strongest in those aged 18-30 and in males.

Evidence Rating Level: 2 (Good)

Juvenile idiopathic arthritis (JIA) is a chronic inflammatory condition that affects the temporomandibular joint. JIA can lead to deformities in the joint that can cause upper airway collapse and difficulty breathing, increasing the risk of obstructive sleep apnoea (OSA). However, no studies have investigated the association between JIA and OSA.

This retrospective cohort study conducted in Taiwan investigated the risk of developing OSA following a JIA diagnosis using a longitudinal research database. Patients were followed retrospectively until OSA was resolved or withdrawal from the national insurance system which would have precluded them from treatment information in the The primary outcome assessed was presence of OSA in the context of a JIA diagnosis.

Overall, this study showed an increased risk of OSA amongst patients with JIA, compared to the non-JIA control group, after controlling for confounding comorbidities. The incidence of OSA in the JIA group was highest among individuals between the ages of 18-30. Furthermore, males were at greater risk of developing OSA compared with females in the entire study population. Finally, amongst patients with JIA, onset of OSA was most common either within 36 months, or after 60 months of first presentation with JIA-related sequelae. However, this study was limited because JIA is typically a delayed diagnosis and thus the association between JIA and OSA may be underestimated due to the exclusion of OSA first individuals with a delayed JIA diagnosis. Nonetheless, this study was significant in suggesting that there may be an association between JIA and OSA.

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