Sleep Medicine at The Children's Hospital at Westmead

Contact details

General enquiries

  • Phone: (02) 9845 3437
  • Fax:  (02) 9845 3396
  • Location: Respiratory Medicine, Sleep Unit, Children's Hospital at Westmead
  • Email to Sleep Medicine

Home Respiratory Support Service

  • Phone: (02) 9845 3437
  • Location: Nursing Liaison

Sleep Unit

  • Phone: (02) 9845 3437
  • Location: Rotary Wing, near Turner Day Stay

Clinical Manager

Clinical Nurse Consultant 

Nurse Specialist

Scientific Officers

This service provides diagnostic and treatment facilities for children with sleep-associated disorders, including obstructive sleep apnoea, chronic lung diseases, and problems with ventilation. 

We offer outpatient clinical services for review of patients with sleep disorders, overnight sleep studies to diagnose sleep problems and sleep studies as well as screening studies to prioritise and monitor treatment.

The David Read Sleep Unit was the first Paediatric Sleep Unit to be established in NSW and continues to be one of the biggest and busiest units in Australia.

We work closely with the Respiratory Service.

Sleep Outpatient Clinic

Location

  • Bandaged Bear Outpatients Department, Level 2, The Children’s Hospital, Westmead NSW 2145

When

  • Sleep Clinic runs every Thursday afternoon from 1 – 4 pm 

Referral information

Referral Letter Requirements

  • Patient's full first and last name
  • Date of Birth
  • Contact details and address
  • Medicare card number
  • Medical history and the reason for referral

Home Respiratory Support Service

  • Overnight screening studies for Respiratory abnormalities
  • Inpatient Services for establishing respiratory support
  • Home Respiratory Support including oxygen, CPAP, and non-invasive ventilation.
  • The Long Term Ventilation Unit (LTVU)
  • SIDS research
  • Sleep Apnoea Research

We assist children with long-term ventilation in the home and community environment by providing provides medical and nursing consultancy. Children are managed in association with the Long-Term Ventilation Unit (LTVU). The LTVU includes nurse Practitioners and Allied Health Support to prepare children for discharge into the community.

The children supported by this service have multiple technological needs that include ventilation (whether during wakefulness and/or sleep). This team supports families in their applications to relevant Government agencies for appropriate funding packages, including the ongoing medical and psychosocial reports that are required to maintain the funding support.

Our Scientific Officers participate in collating equipment requirements and ensuring that there are safety backups present. We work closely with the Department of Biomedical Engineering and staff from Inhalation Therapy to provide ongoing care of these children and to maintain their equipment.

David Read Sleep Unit

Sleep studies

A sleep study is a test that is done to diagnose your child's sleep problem. A sleep study is an overnight test that monitors brain waves, breathing through the nose and mouth, oxygen and carbon dioxide levels, heart rate and body movements.

When you arrive, the Sleep Unit staff will explain what will happen, but generally, the following procedure occurs.

  • Sensors are attached to your child's head, chin, face, chest and legs. This is painless.
  • Your child is then free to move around, eat dinner, watch television and play until bedtime.
  • Before your child goes to bed, a small plastic tube is put under the nose to measure airflow.
  • Two elastic straps are put around the chest and stomach to measure breathing.
  • A probe is put on the finger to measure oxygen.
  • Another sensor is put on the skin to measure carbon dioxide and another plastic sensor above the top lip to measure breathing through the mouth.
  • All the sensors are then connected to a computer which monitors the study.

A parent is required to stay overnight with their child. A bed is provided for only one parent.

We hope to monitor your child for at least eight hours overnight. We will wake your child between 5:30 am and 6:00 am and disconnected from the sensors. Your child can then shower and then you are free to go home.

The results of the sleep study will be sent to your referring doctor.

What do you need to bring?

Dinner is provided for your child. If your child is bottle-fed or has special diet needs, please bring these with you. The Sleep Unit has a fridge and microwave.
The cafeteria is also open until 8pm where you can purchase meals.

Please bring:

  • Medicare Card
  • A valid referral Letter (if you have not given us one already)
  • Familiar items your child uses such as a pillow, toys and books. These items can be a comfort to your child and may help them sleep
  • Button-up pyjamas
  • Toiletries for you and your child - shower facilities are available
  • If your child is on CPAP or BiLevel therapy, then you need to bring all equipment to the sleep study (i.e. CPAP/BiLevel machine, mask and tubing)
  • Medications your child uses or may need
  • You should also bring your own pyjamas and a good book

One parent or carer is required to stay with the child overnight. A single is bed is provided in the room for one carer.

If other family members are travelling with you and require accommodation, please phone the Sleep Administration on (02) 9845 3437

Please do not hesitate to contact the Sleep Medicine Unit if you have any further questions about sleep studies.

Staff Profiles

Professor Karen Waters (Head of Sleep Medicine)

Professor Karen Waters is Head of Sleep Medicine in Paediatric Sleep Medicine and has more than 20 years of experience in the field. Professor Waters also heads the Long Term Ventilation Unit, which overseas management of children who are ventilated in their homes. 

She also conducts clinical and laboratory-based research studies with specials interests in the control of breathing and sudden death in infants.

Dr Chris Seton (Paediatric & Adolescent Sleep Physician) 

Dr Seton is a Paediatric and Adolescent Sleep Physician. He shares his time across The Children’s Hospital at Westmead, St Vincent’s Hospital, the Woolcock Institute of Medical Research, and Sydney Adventist Hospital.

Dr Seton diagnoses and treats sleep disorders in children of all ages, but is particularly passionate about adolescent sleep issues.

Sleep Medicine Consultants

Information for private patients

If you prefer you can see the following doctors privately.

Dr Chris Seton (Paediatric & Adolescent Sleep Physician) 

Referral information

  • A referral letter from a General Practitioner or Paediatrician addressed to Dr Chis Seton must be faxed before an appointment can be organised.
  • Fax: 02 9845 3396

Appointment enquiries

  • To make or change an appointment please call 0423 523 840

Appointments can be arranged at the following locations:

  • Westmead: Suite 16, Level 2, The Children's Hospital Medical Centre, Hainsworth Street, Westmead NSW 2145
  • Glebe: The Woolcock Paediatric & Adolescent Sleep Clinic, Sydney University, 431 Glebe Point Road, Glebe NSW 2037
  • Hornsby: 102 Balmoral Street, Hornsby NSW 2077 

Professor Dominic Fitzgerald

Referral information

  • A referral letter from a General Practitioner or Paediatrician addressed to Professor Dominic Fitzgerald must be faxed or email to the Respiratory Secretary before an appointment can be organised.
  • Fax: 02 9845 3396
  • Email to Respiratory Medicine

Referral Letter Requirements

  • Patient's full first and last name
  • Date of Birth
  • Contact details and address
  • Medicare card number
  • Medical history and the reason for referral

Appointment Enquiries

  • Phone:  02 9845 3397

Location

  • The Children’s Hospital Medical Centre, Suite 16, Level 2, Hainsworth Street, Westmead NSW 2145