The Difference in Sleep Studies

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Do you suffer from obstructive sleep apnea? Central sleep apnea? Mixed sleep apnea? Do you think that you might suffer from any disorders listed? Are you asking yourself what you should do in this situation? Well, obviously, you consult your doctor. At that point, they more than likely will recommend that you have a sleep study. You think nothing of it at first – a sleep study? Okay, no big deal, sounds easy enough, right? Wrong. Your doctor when goes into detail about what type of study he/she wants you to have… You’re sitting there looking at him/her like you are trying to solve a difficult math equation. What do you mean there’s more than on type of sleep study!?

The first type of study, and the most “basic,” is the PSG; also known as the diagnostic polysomnogram. This sleep study is used to “diagnose snoring, obstructive sleep apnea, periodic limb movement disorder, sleep-state misperception, and other less common sleep disorder; they can also be very helpful in investigating insomnia, narcolepsy, idiopathic hypersomnolence and restless limb syndrome (Snore Australia, 2018). While undergoing this sleep study, your sleep cycles are monitored through your brain activity, breathing activity, and muscle activity. A PSG study is typically done overnight – at home or in a sleep lab – but there are certain facilities that offer the sleep study during the day for those who work over night.

at home sleep study.jpgAt home sleep study

The second most common study is a CPAP titration. Similar to the CPAP titration, we also have the Bi-PAP and APAP titration. After your initial sleep study, if it is recommend that you use a CPAP machine; you more than likely will have to undergo a CPAP titration. During this sleep test, the patient is monitored throughout the night (or day!), of course, while asleep. While you’re busy sleeping, a sleep technician will use monitor the pressure set on the CPAP machine. They will adjust the pressure as necessary to assist you in breathing through the night to prevent any complications in your breathing.

inlab sleep study.jpgIn lab sleep study 

If your OSA is so severe, you physician may recommend a split-night sleep study. According the American Association of Sleep Technicians, “this study diagnoses OSA and titrates CPAP in a single night, reducing time to treatment.” They go on to say, “During the first part of the night, you’ll preform a polysomnography and follow up the remainder of the night with CPAP titration. The split night study determines your patient’s PAP settings during the same night without them having to come back another night for another test.” If you or your physician believes that you already suffer from sleep apnea, then this is the sleep study that you will need to partake in rather than a PSG.

There are a few other sleep tests that are done, but these listed pertain to the CPAP world the most. What kind of sleep study did you have in order to get your CPAP machine? Did you have to go to the sleep lab or were you able to get away with sleeping in your own bed?

For more information on the sleep studies mentioned here (and the ones that were not), please see:

For more information on your CPAP machine, supplies, and accessories, please see:

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