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Bad sleep is bad for your cardiovascular health.

The research of my group focuses on sleep in infants and children. This is of the utmost importance to the health of every baby and child. Sleep is the primary activity of the brain during early development. By the age of 2 years a child has spent a total of 13 months sleeping! Between 2 and 5 years of age children spend equal amounts of time asleep as awake. A common cause of sleep disruption in childhood is partial or complete upper airway obstruction, termed sleep disordered breathing, with the hallmark feature being snoring. The repetitive airway obstruction leads to intermittent periods of hypoxia, with perhaps even more damaging rapid re-oxygenation after release of the obstruction, which is known to lead to brain injury. Repetitive events also cause surges in blood pressure, which leads to hypertension. In this project we will examine the effects of sleep disordered breathing on vascular stiffness. Vascular stiffness reflects the compliance of the large conductance vessels and is an important contributor to increased cardiac stress and a risk factor for adverse cardiovascular events. It is a non-invasive method of assessing vascular dysfunction. Students will be involved in analysing the physiological data collected during overnight clinical sleep studies and will have the opportunity to participate in these in the brand new Melbourne Children’s Sleep Centre, Monash Children’s Hospital to understand how the data are collected.
Essential criteria: 
Minimum entry requirements can be found here:
Sleep, Children, Obstructive Sleep Apnoea, Paediatrics
School of Clinical Sciences at Monash Health / Hudson Institute of Medical Research » Paediatrics
Available options 
Masters by research
Time commitment 
Top-up scholarship funding available 
Physical location 
Monash Health Translation Precinct (Monash Medical Centre)
Lisa Walter

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