August 21, 2014 – Sleep Study


Anchor lead:  If you have sleep apnea you should have a formal sleep study, Elizabeth Tracey reports

Obstructive sleep apnea, known in the medical parlance as OSA, causes people to stop breathing while they’re sleeping, and is associated with a host of negative health consequences and sudden death.  Now the American College of Physicians has issued new guidelines on best evaluation practices for the condition, Redonda Miller, an internal medicine expert at Johns Hopkins, explains.

Miller: All of us should pursue a formal sleep study with patients with unexplained daytime sleepiness.  We certainly need to keep in mind all of the risk factors and other symptoms patients may have for OSA.  There are multiple sleep scales that don’t necessarily correlate with the apnea/hypopnea index, which is the actual number of obstructive episodes one has while one sleeps and is the cornerstone of diagnosis.   :27

Miller says an overnight study really is better than at-home evaluations, so if your physician recommends one it’s likely a good idea.  At Johns Hopkins, I’m Elizabeth Tracey.