A sleep study is a non-invasive overnight exam that helps doctors diagnose disorders such as sleep apnea, insomnia, nighttime behaviors like sleepwalking, etc. Usually, these disorders are difficult to identify in a routine visit. Therefore, to gather more evidence, the doctors use this method to monitor the patient while he is asleep to see his brain and body's behavior.
In this exam, the patient is required to go to a sleep lab where an ECG is used to monitor the sleep stages and the REM and NREM cycles. Through this monitoring, it is possible to identify disruptions in the pattern of the patient's sleep. A sleep study is also used to measure eye movements, oxygen levels, heart rate, breathing rate, and body movements.
WHAT ARE THE DIFFERENT TYPES OF SLEEP STUDIES ?
Studies can differ depending on the patient's symptoms and sleep disorders. The different types of sleep studies are :
Also known as Diagnostic Overnight PSG, this sleep study is used to monitor the patient's general sleep cycle, and certain body functions like eye movements, brain & muscle activity, blood oxygen levels, body movements, heart rate, etc.
- Multiple Sleep Latency Test
Also known as Diagnostic Daytime MSLT, this exam measures how quickly a patient falls asleep and enters REM sleep during the day. This test is usually done the morning after Diagnostic PSG to diagnose excessive daytime sleepiness.
- CPAP Titration
Continuous Positive Airway Pressure Titration is a common treatment for sleep apnea. In this exam, the sleep technician measures the air pressure needed by the patient from his CPAP.
- Two night PSG and CPAP Titration
In this exam, on the first night, the patient is monitored and evaluated. If the results suggest that the patient has sleep apnea, he is required to come again on the second night to figure out the right air pressure for CPAP treatment.
- Split night PSG and CPAP Titration
When sleep apnea is strongly suspected, a diagnostic PSG exam is used to monitor the patient in the first half of the night, and CPAP titration is performed in the second half of the night.