The director of the Sleep Clinic at Boston Children’s Hospital discussed the lack of clinical research for pediatric sleep disorders and what the current landscape looks like.
“There are very few clinical trials looking at the efficacy of these medications for children, so most of our evidence is based off of case series, case reports, and observational trials.”
Sleep disorders can be a challenge to address for adult patients, but for sleep specialists who treat pediatric patients like Kiran Maski, MD, MPH, director, Sleep Clinic, Boston Children’s Hospital, and assistant professor of neurology, Harvard Medical School, the managing disease can be even more difficult.
In a conversation with NeurologyLive, Maski discussed the current state of the science in treating pediatric sleep disorders such as insomnia, circadian rhythm disorders, obstructive sleep apnea (OSA), and narcolepsy. She described a rather bleak treatment landscape, with minimal clinical development and research in the pediatric population.
Additionally, Maski shared her insight into how the newly approved therapies have made an impact in this population. One such example is sodium oxybate, which has shown some success in children, and pitolisant, which is currently being assessed in this population. She also shared some insight into the use of cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) in conjunction with medications is helping to address the challenges.