What is a sleep study
A sleep study, also known as a polysomnography, is a test that is used to diagnose sleep disorders such as sleep apnea, insomnia, restless legs syndrome, and narcolepsy. There are two types of sleep studies: in-lab sleep studies and home sleep studies.
In-Lab Sleep Study: During an in-lab sleep study, the patient will spend a night at a sleep center or lab, where their sleep will be monitored and recorded by a sleep technologist. The patient will be hooked up to various devices that will monitor their brain activity, eye movement, heart rate, breathing patterns, oxygen levels, and muscle activity. The sleep technologist will observe the patient throughout the night and make adjustments to the devices if necessary. In-lab sleep studies are usually recommended for patients with complex sleep disorders or for those who may need additional monitoring during the test.
Home Sleep Study: A home sleep study, also known as a portable sleep study or a sleep apnea test, is a test that can be done in the comfort of the patient’s own home. The patient will be given a device that they will wear overnight that will monitor their breathing, oxygen levels, heart rate, and other vital signs. The patient will be given instructions on how to use the device and how to prepare for the test. The data from the device will be analyzed by a sleep specialist who will make a diagnosis and recommend treatment options if necessary. Home sleep studies are usually recommended for patients with suspected sleep apnea or other less complex sleep disorders.
In conclusion, sleep studies are an important tool for diagnosing sleep disorders. In-lab sleep studies are conducted in a sleep center or lab, while home sleep studies can be done in the patient’s own home. The type of sleep study recommended will depend on the patient’s symptoms and the suspected sleep disorder. A sleep specialist can help determine which type of sleep study is appropriate for the patient.