If you’re one of the more than 70 million Americans suffering from a sleep disorder each night, you will be glad to know that help is now close to home. Union County Hospital in Anna is offering sleep studies performed in conjunction with The Clayton Sleep Institute of St. Louis.
Here are some common questions about sleep studies:
Why do I need a sleep study?
There are several reasons why you should have a sleep test. Sleep is important for your overall health and well being. Disrupted sleep or too little sleep has been associated with many different health consequences, including, but not limited to, high blood pressure, diabetes, weight gain, heart disease, lung disease, stroke and depression. If you experience poor sleep quality at night and\or if you are sleepy or fatigued during the day, then a sleep study can indicate if an underlying sleep disorder is a contributing factor.
What is a sleep study?
This is a painless, overnight procedure in which electrodes are applied externally to monitor brain waves, breathing, snoring, heart rhythms, leg movements and other physiological data. The procedure is monitored by a highly trained technologist watching the waveforms on a computer screen while you sleep. A specially trained physician will then evaluate the results of the test.
How long does the study last?
Typically a patient will arrive between 7:30 & 9:30pm. Most patients are free to go the next morning around 6:30-8:00am. For certain sleep disorders, such as Narcolepsy, it is necessary to stay the next day for additional testing. This is something that will be discussed in advance with the patient needing the test.
Can I get up and use the restroom during a study?
Yes! You are able to move around and if you need to get up, a technologist will tell you what to do or you can simply call for the technologist to assist you.
What should I bring?
Something to sleep in, like pajamas, shorts and a T-Shirt. Bring any toiletries you may need. Feel free to bring a favorite pillow if that will help you feel more at home. Each room has a television, but you may also want to bring a book to read. Any medication that you normally take during the time you would be at the sleep lab. Please bring food if you are scheduled for daytime testing. Our goal is to make you as comfortable as possible.
Will my Insurance cover my sleep study?
Most major insurance companies, as well as Medicare, provide coverage for sleep studies. Our staff will verify coverage prior to your sleep test and if there are any issues, you will be contacted.
What if I can’t sleep?
This is a common concern. We provide a comfortable setting to help you feel at home and at ease so getting to sleep won’t be a problem.
Will I be able to go to work after my sleep study?
We have showers available for your convenience so that if you need to go straight to work from the lab you will be able to do so. Please communicate this to our staff so they can make sure you get up at the appropriate time.
How do I get the results from my test?
Depending on your referring physician’s preferences, your results may be discussed with you the following morning by one of our sleep specialist, or our staff will fax the results to your referring physician within 24-48 hours and then it is up to your physician to go over the results with you.
What are the treatments for a sleep disorder?
If it is determined that you have a sleep disorder, a physician or sleep specialist will discuss treatment options with you. The most common disorder identified in a sleep study is Obstructive Sleep Apnea, where you snore and stop breathing at night. That is most frequently treated with CPAP. CPAP stands for Continuous Positive Airway Pressure. CPAP is a small mask worn over the nose and\or mouth. The mask provides air pressure that keeps the throat from closing during sleep.
For more information on sleep studies, contact your physician or you may call Union County Hospital at 618-833-4511 extension 4248.