Educational Series: Sleep disturbances in children with neurodevelopmental disorders

In this review:

This publication is intended as an educational resource for healthcare professionals involved in the management of children with sleep disturbances associated with neurodevelopmental disorders (NDDs).

This review focuses largely on the treatment of insomnia in this paediatric group and defines the place of melatonin in its management. In 2012, The Royal Australia New Zealand College of Psychiatrists (RANZCP) provided a submission to PHARMAC for the funding of melatonin for secondary insomnia in children and adolescents with neurodevelopmental comorbidities.1 In 2015, the Pharmacists and Therapeutics Special Interest Group of the Paediatric Society of New Zealand asked PHARMAC to reconsider the priority of funding melatonin 2 mg prolonged-release tablets. As of July 2017, prolonged-release melatonin is fully funded via Special Authority for patients ≤18 years of age who have persistent and distressing insomnia secondary to NDDs (this is an off-label indication).

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