Care at NUH

Paediatric Pulmonary and Sleep

2024/07/15
Paediatric Pulmonary Medicine and Sleep

The Division of Paediatric Pulmonary Medicine and Sleep provides a comprehensive range of diagnostic and management services for both common and complex respiratory and sleep disorders in infants, children and teenagers. Our services, available on both an outpatient and inpatient basis,are provided in a child-friendly and family-centred environment. We welcome referrals from polyclinics, general practitioners and other medical professionals. Private patients may self-refer orbe  referred by their doctor. 

Our Team

Our multi-disciplinary team comprises paediatricians specialising in pulmonary medicine and sleep, specialist nurses, respiratory therapists, lung function laboratory personnel and sleep laboratory technicians. We are supported by other specialists such as Ear, Nose and Throat (ENT) surgeons and allied health professionals including chest physiotherapists and speech and language therapists. 

Head of Division & Senior Consultant 

Senior Consultants 

Specialty Nurse 

  • Senior Staff Nurse Sheery Lau Hie Rong

 

Our Services

We provide comprehensive care to patients from infancy through adolescence and young adulthood, managing a wide spectrum of respiratory system disorders. Our services encompass state-of-the-art diagnostics, interventions and management delivered in a timely manner. We evaluate children presenting with various of respiratory symptoms, including: 

  • Persistent or chronic cough 

  • Excessive phlegm and chestiness 

  • Breathing difficulties and exercise-related respiratory issues 

  • Persistent or recurrent noisy breathing 

  • Persistent or recurrent wheezing 

  • Frequent chest infections 

  • Abnormal findings in chest X-rays and other investigations of the respiratory system 

  • Sleep-related problems such as poor, restless sleep, snoring, difficulty maintaining sleep or excessive daytime sleepiness 

We manage conditions such as:  

 

  • Asthma 

  • Allergic rhinitis 

  • Pneumonia 

  • Other respiratory tract infections such as bronchiolitis  

  • Pleural diseases 

  • Chronic lung diseases such as childhood interstitial lung disease, bronchiectasis, cystic fibrosis, and bronchopulmonary dysplasia (BPD) 

  • Immunodeficiency-related frequent chest infections (in conjunction with the immunology team) 

  • Neuromuscular disorders 

  • Lung aspiration syndromes, including swallowing abnormalities 

  • Home ventilation requirements 

  • Chest wall deformities 

  • Congenital abnormalities of the airways and lungs 

  • Sleep-related breathing disorders (such as obstructive sleep apnoea - OSA) and common behavioural sleep problems 

  • Other diseases with lung involvement 

  • Lung Function and Allergy Testing 
  • We provide a wide range of diagnostic services, including a lung function laboratory equipped with various tests to diagnose childhood respiratory conditions. These tests include spirometry, lung volumes, diffusion capacity, exercise stress testing and exhaled nitric oxide evaluation. We also provide lung function assessments for preschool children using impedance oscillometry. Recognising the critical role of allergies in conditions like asthma, we offer allergy tests, such as skin prick testing and in-vitro blood testing, as part of our comprehensive evaluation of allergic children. 

Paediatric Fibreoptic Bronchoscopy Service 

We offer a paediatric flexible fibreoptic bronchoscopy service, which includes broncho-alveolar lavage, for patients ranging from newborns to adolescents. This procedure enables us to closely examine the lungs and airways, collect samples for further analysis, and treat certain airway and lung conditions. Most procedures can be performed under sedation, without the need for general anaesthesia. 

Chronic Pulmonary Disease 

We manage a wide range of chronic lung disorders, including, but not limited to, bronchiectasis, childhood interstitial lung diseases, bronchopulmonary dysplasia and cystic fibrosis. 

We provide a full range of lung function tests, along with radiological and pathological facilities for diagnosis and evaluation. Sweat testing by pilocarpine iontophoresis for cystic fibrosis is also available at our centre. 

In providing long-term care for children with chronic respiratory disorders, we collaborate closely with physiotherapists, occupational therapists, nutritionists, social workers and other paramedical staff to ensure holistic care. 

Multidisciplinary Clinics 

Neuromuscular clinic 

We host multidisciplinary clinics for children with neuromuscular disorders. In these clinics, patients consult with paediatricians specialising in pulmonary medicine and sleep, alongside other specialists, in a single session. This approach minimises the number of hospital visits required. Our team closely monitors the patient's respiratory health and manages any respiratory complications arising from the underlying neuromuscular condition. For advanced disease management, we offer home respiratory support and ventilation services. 

Aero-Digestive Service 

Children with swallowing disorders often experience feeding difficulties and/or recurrent or chronic lung diseases due to recurrent aspiration into the airways and lungs. 

Our aero-digestive clinic conducts clinical evaluations for patients suspected of having these conditions. Evaluations are carried out through a multidisciplinary approach, involving paediatricians specialising in gastroenterology, nutrition, hepatology and liver transplantation, dietitians and swallowing specialists. Diagnostic tests may include laryngoscopy, bronchoscopy, FEES (fibreoptic endoscopic evaluation of swallowing) and videofluoroscopy. Following diagnosis, patients receive appropriate management and follow-up care. 

We also offer ongoing assessment and rehabilitation for children who have undergone tracheostomy, including training for speech and vocalisation. 

Sleep and Airway Clinic 

Our sleep and airway clinic addresses complex sleep-related issues in children, managed by a team including paediatric pulmonologists, ENT surgeons, developmental paediatricians and paediatric sleep psychologists.  

Services offered include screening and diagnostics for conditions such as obstructive sleep apnoea and other sleep-related breathing disorders, which may present symptoms such as excessive daytime sleepiness and snoring. 

Additionally, we address common behavioural sleep issues such as night-wakings, night-time fears and bedtime resistance. 

Specialist Clinics

Children's General Chest Clinic 

In this clinic, we address a wide range of respiratory conditions in children. Each patient receives a comprehensive evaluation from a paediatrician specialising in pulmonary medicine and sleep. Based on the diagnosis, we plan specific investigations, treatment and follow-up care. 

Children's Asthma and Allergy Clinic 

Our Children's Asthma and Allergy Network, known as the I CAN! Programme, offers a patient-centred approach to the care of children with asthma and allergies. Paediatricians specialising in allergy and immunology, together with allied health professionals, collaborate in evaluating and managing these conditions. 

We provide detailed diagnostic workup, thorough evaluation and reinforce treatment with education and counselling. Emphasising family-based asthma management, we empower patients and their families to be primary managers of the disease, supported by personalised asthma action plans. The clinic services are available throughout the week. 

Paediatric Polysomnography Service (Sleep Study for Children) 

Our paediatric sleep laboratory is equipped to diagnose sleep disorders in children, with technicians trained to follow international guidelines. We measure various sleep parameters, including respiratory movement, oxygen saturation, carbon dioxide levels, electroencephalography, and video recording. The data from the sleep study help us assess the patient's sleep quality and identify any sleep-related issues. Based on these findings, appropriate treatment and follow-up plans are devised. 

Our Programmes

The Children's Asthma and Allergy Network (I CAN!) 

The I CAN! Programme is dedicated to the holistic care of children with asthma and/or allergies. This includes both inpatient and outpatient care, acute care services, and access to the latest diagnostic and therapeutic facilities. 

For more information, contact us at [email protected]. 

Paediatric Home Assisted Ventilation Programme 

This programme supports patients with chronic respiratory failure who require assisted ventilation. It includes titration of home ventilatory needs, assistance with home equipment specifications, and education on managing medical and equipment issues at home. For certain patients with high medical needs, our home-care team offers home visits to provide care and reduce the frequency of hospital visits. 

What To Expect At Your First Appointment

During the first appointment, a paediatrician specialising in pulmonary medicine and sleep conducts a comprehensive consultation. We gather detailed information about your child and your concerns. The consultation may involve specialised tests (such as lung function testing or allergy tests), with results discussed by our team. Treatment recommendations, including medication adjustments, will be provided. A follow-up plan will be established post-consultation. 

Health Resources
Find Us

Khoo Teck Puat – National University Children’s Medical Institute 

For directions to the Khoo Teck Puat – National University Children’s Medical Institute, including access via MRT, drop-off points and parking information, click here. 

For more information on our paediatric clinic or contact details, click here.

To make an appointment online, click here. 

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