The Most Relaxing Sleep Testing in Western North Carolina

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What is a sleep study?

A sleep study (polysomnogram or PSG) is a study that is used to evaluate sleep patterns and diagnose sleep disorders. It involves recording of many indicators of bodily functions that are affected by sleep disorders.  A typical Polysomnogram includes the following measures:

  • Brain waves (EEG) to measure sleep stages/arousals (electrodes placed on the scalp)
  • Eye movements (electrodes placed by the eyes)
  • Chin muscle tone to measure teeth grinding etc (electrodes placed near the chin)
  • Heart rate and rhythm (electrodes placed on the chest)
  • Leg movements (electrodes placed on the legs)
  • Airflow (sensor placed near the nose and mouth)
  • Breathing effort (two elastic belts placed around chest and abdomen)
  • Oxygen saturation level (small sensor attached to the finger or ear lobe)
  • Audio and digital video recording

All of this information is reviewed, scored, and interpreted by a sleep specialist (Dr. Buechler) and recommendations for further study or treatment are made based on this study.

 

Preparing for your sleep study

What to Do on the day of the study:

  • Avoid caffeine
  • Avoid napping
  • Avoid alcoholic beverages
  • Take your regular medications
  • Wash your hair with shampoo only and dry it
  • Avoid any use of hairspray, oil, or gels

What to Bring with you:

  • Comfortable sleepwear, preferably non-slick (cotton)
  • Toiletries that you will need
  • Your own pillow (if desired) or any other items that will insure your comfort during the night of your study or the next morning

You will be staying in an actual room in the Crowne Plaza Resort.  The sleep center will have towels, washcloths, and a private (in-room) bathroom for getting ready for bed and showering in the morning.

If you have any special needs please let the sleep center staff know so that they can be prepared to accommodate these.

 

What to expect in the sleep lab

You should come to the sleep center on the date of your study between 8:00 PM and 8:30 PM.   Simply check in at the resort front desk, and you will then meet with the technologist who will escort you to your room and go over final details with you prior to beginning your study.

In order to gather the information,  sensors will be placed on your scalp, face, chest, abdomen, and legs to allow us to measure brain waves, eye movement, heart rate, oxygen levels, leg movements, movement of your
chest and abdomen, and flow of air through your nose and mouth. These sensors are attached to a relay box at the bedside that send the signals to the central monitoring area. There is a microphone and a video
camera in the room as well so the technologist will be in communication at all times should you need anything. Everything is being recorded for analysis.

Should you have any problems or need to get up to go to the bathroom you need only call the technologist by speaking aloud of your needs and these will be attended to. The sleep study usually lasts until 5:30 AM or 6:00 AM. If you need an earlier wake up please let us know.

You are welcome to relax in your room after the study is completed and stay as late as 10am.  Aside from the monitoring equipment, the room is a normal hotel room with typical amenities such as TV and coffee maker.
Additionally, you are welcome to enjoy a complimentary breakfast voucher for the hotel restaurant.  (Room service is not available at the sleep center)

 

CPAP introduction, titration

If we note frequent disturbances of your breathing in the early portion of your study the technologist may begin using CPAP (continuous positive airway pressure) during the latter part of the study (called a split night study) or a second night  may be required to properly adjust the pressure to your individual needs. Before your study the technologist will introduce you to CPAP and get you ready for this part of the study so you will be prepared if this occurs.

CPAP is the most effective and immediate treatment for sleep apnea and is widely used. The device will deliver air gently to your nose or nose and mouth along with humidity under pressure that keeps your airway open and helps you to breathe better and stop snoring as you sleep. No additional oxygen is provided by CPAP but this may need to be added in some individuals and can be used along with the CPAP.

The idea of sleeping with a mask is sometimes a concern but the technologist will try to find a comfortable mask for you and will start at a very low pressure and gradually increase it until your breathing problems are controlled. Every person requires a different pressure and this can take time to establish. It is possible that even if CPAP is started on the first night that it will require another full night study to  adjust the CPAP to your "optimal" pressure.

 

 After the sleep study

Once the information about your sleep is collected it is carefully analyzed and interpreted.  Results are typically available 5-7 business days after the study.

Recommendations are made based upon your study (or studies) and treatment will be initiated. This may be done by the sleep physician (if your doctor requests that) or your doctor may supervise your therapy.
In either case the results and recommendations will be communicated to your doctor and to you.

If you have any questions during your evaluation, your sleep study, or afterward please do not hesitate to communicate them to the members of the sleep center team.

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