Institute of Clinical Research and Health Policy Studies, Tufts University School of Medicine, Tufts Medical Center, Boston, MA
To identify and prioritize future research needs (FRN) topics for diagnosis and treatment of obstructive sleep apnea (OSA).
Twenty-one panel members represented six stake-holder categories: patients and the public, providers; purchasers of health care, payers, policymakers, and principal investigators. Building on a recently completed comparative effectiveness review, stakeholders nominated and discussed potential FRN topics. Stakeholders then nominated their top priority FRN topics based on the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality Effective Health Care Program Selection Criteria. From these nominations, the highest priority FRN topics were determined and were elaborated upon to include possible study designs to address the topics.
Thirty-seven topics were discussed and prioritized. The nine highest priority FRN topics included: cost-effectiveness of management strategies, defining age- and sex-specific criteria for OSA, evaluating routine preoperative screening for OSA, evaluating involvement of a sleep medicine specialist in diagnosis of OSA, evaluating clinical prediction rules, assessing the effect of treating sleep disordered breathing and long-term clinical outcomes, comparing treatments for patients who do not tolerate positive airway pressure, evaluating strategies to improve treatment compliance, and evaluating the association between sleep apnea severity and long-term clinical outcomes.
While there are numerous specific research questions with low or insufficient strength of evidence for OSA management, OSA patients, their healthcare providers, and society at large would benefit from refocusing research efforts into the prioritized research questions and away from simple comparisons of short-term outcomes between specific interventions.
Patel K; Moorthy D; Chan JA; Concannon TW. High priority future research needs for obstructive sleep apnea diagnosis and treatment. J Clin Sleep Med 2013;9(4):395-402.