What is Sleep Studies?

This procedure is a non-invasive, overnight exam that allows doctors to monitor your sleep; it records EEG monitors what is happening in your brain and body while sleeping. This test is usually performed in hospitals. Generally, a sleep study will measure things like eye movements, oxygen levels in your blood, heart and breathing rates, snoring, and body movements. The data is usually taken by a technologist and later evaluated by your doctor. The results may take up to two weeks when you will schedule a follow-up appointment.

Types of Sleep Studies

There are different types of sleep studies, and they are available depending on people’s sleep disorders or symptoms.

  • Polysomnography: this study measures eye movements, brain and muscle activity, respiratory effort and airflow, blood oxygen levels, body positioning, and movements, snoring, and heart rate throughout the night.
  • Multiple Sleep Latency Test: this test is primarily used to diagnose excessive daytime sleepiness due to narcolepsy or an unknown cause. In addition, this test measures how quickly someone falls asleep and how quickly they enter REM sleep during daytime naps.
  • CPAP Titration: Continuous positive airway pressure is a typical treatment for sleep apnea. This test determines the amount of air pressure that patient needs from their CPAP. This test usually requires a second sleep study when sleep apnea is strongly suspected; a split-night sleep study.
  • In a split-night study: polysomnography is used to diagnose sleep apnea during the first half of the night, and CPAP titration is performed during the second half of the night.
  • Home Sleep Apnea Testing: this test collects data about a patient’s breathing, heart rate, and other variables overnight. However, this test provides less information, and a technologist does not oversee the process.

What Can a Sleep Study Diagnose?

Asleep study diagnoses many sleep disorders, including:

  • Insomnia
  • Narcolepsy
  • Periodic Limb Movement Disorder
  • REM Sleep Behavior Disorder
  • Restless Leg Syndrome
  • Sleep Apnea
  • Sleepwalking
  • Sleep Talking (Somniloquy)

Who Needs a Sleep Study?

  • Suppose you experience any sleep issues or daytime symptoms such as fatigue, drowsiness, depression, or difficulty concentrating. Patients with obesity with sleep issues should be screened for sleep apnea.
  • If you have been diagnosed with a sleep disorder and your symptoms are not improving with treatment.
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