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Sleep and Breathing

, Volume 23, Issue 1, pp 281–285 | Cite as

A detection dog for obstructive sleep apnea

  • Anni Koskinen
  • Adel Bachour
  • Jenni Vaarno
  • Heli Koskinen
  • Sari Rantanen
  • Leif Bäck
  • Tuomas KlockarsEmail author
Sleep Breathing Physiology and Disorders • Short Communication

Abstract

Purpose

We sought to assess whether a dog can be trained to distinguish obstructive sleep apnea patients from healthy controls based on the olfactory detection of urine.

Methods

Urine samples were collected from 23 adult male obstructive sleep apnea patients and from 20 voluntary adult male volunteers. Three dogs were trained through reinforced operant conditioning.

Results

Two of the three dogs correctly detected two thirds of obstructive sleep apnea patients (p < 0.000194 and p < 0.000003, respectively).

Conclusions

We found that dogs can be trained to distinguish obstructive sleep apnea patients from healthy controls based on the smell of urine. Potentially, dogs could be utilized to identify novel biomarkers or possibly screen for obstructive sleep apnea.

Keywords

Canine Diagnostics Olfactory detection Screening 

Notes

Funding

This study was financially supported by grants from the Finska Läkaresällskapet and the Päivikki and Sakari Sohlberg Foundation. The sponsors had no role in the design or conduct of this research.

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

Ethical approval

All procedures performed in studies involving human participants were carried out in accordance with the ethical standards of the institutional research committee (Helsinki University Hospital, 168/13/03/00/16) and with the 1964 Helsinki Declaration and its later amendments or comparable ethical standards.

Informed consent

Informed consent was obtained from all individual participants included in this study.

Animal experiments, ethical approval

All applicable international, national, and/or institutional guidelines for the care and use of animals were followed. All procedures performed in studies involving animals were carried out in accordance with the ethical standards of the institution or practice at which the studies were conducted.

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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Otorhinolaryngology – Head and Neck SurgeryHelsinki University Hospital and University of HelsinkiHelsinkiFinland
  2. 2.Sleep UnitHelsinki University Hospital and University of HelsinkiHelsinkiFinland

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