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Frequently Asked Questions


Listed below are the questions we are asked most often by our patients.

DISCLAIMER: This page is intended to provide basic information about sleep disorders to the general public. It is not intended to, nor does it, constitute medical advice, and readers are warned against changing medical schedules and activities without first consulting a physician.

Click a question to view the answer.

1. What is a sleep study?

 

A simple, painless overnight procedure where your brain waves, muscle activity, leg movements, heart rhythms and other body functions can be monitored by a highly-skilled sleep technologist while you sleep. 

 

2. Will I need to take time off from work to have a sleep study?

 

Unless you work a night shift, this should not be necessary. A patient's study usually begins in the evening and is completed before 7am � enabling the patient to go to work following the sleep study. 

 

3. Will my insurance cover my sleep study?

 

Most major insurance companies, as well as Medicare, provide coverage for sleep studies, but it is always advised with any medical procedure to verify coverage with your insurance company before scheduling a sleep study appointment. 

 

4. How do I need to prepare and what do I need to bring for my sleep study?

 

Most sleep study appointments are scheduled to begin around 8-9pm. You may eat dinner before you leave; however, follow your physician's directions concerning alcohol or prescription medications prior to your sleep study. Also before you leave, take a shower and shampoo your hair. Avoid applying makeup or using any gel or hairspray products on your hair, as electrodes will be applied to your face and scalp. Pack an overnight bag with your insurance card, completed forms (if appropriate), reading glasses, sleepwear, toiletries and a change of clothes, if needed. Don't hesitate to bring your favorite pillow or blanket, if you think it will help you sleep better. Many patients also bring their favorite bedtime reading material. Note: As electrodes are placed on the scalp and an oximeter is placed on the fingertip, hair weaves and artificial nails may block our ability to perform your study. 

 

5. Will I be given any shots, injections or medications during my study?

 

No. This is a painless non-invasive procedure. Electrodes will be applied to the scalp, face and legs using a cream affixative. Sensory belts will be used around the chest and abdomen. 

 

6. Will I be shaved where electrodes are placed?

 

Shaving is unnecessary on the scalp. Shaving is only necessary on the chest and legs if heavy body hair is present. Shaving a small area where the electrode is placed assures a good reading and less discomfort (from pulling hair) when the electrode is removed. 

 

7. If I usually take over-the-counter or prescription drugs before bedtime, would I before my sleep study?

 

This is a good question to ask your doctor before coming for your study. However, the doctor usually wants to monitor you under normal circumstances, which would include anything you normally take before bedtime. The only exception may be sleeping pills. Please follow the doctor's orders. 

 

8. Can I get up to use the restroom during a study?

 

Yes. The technologist will show you what to do if you need to get up during the night or, you may simply call the technologist to assist you at that time. 

 

9. Will I be able to go directly to work following my overnight sleep study?

 

Most sleep studies are completed by 6am the following morning. Before your sleep study, check to see if your sleep center has private or shared shower facilities. All will have private or shared half-bath facilities, but not all will have showers. If a shower is needed before going to work and your sleep center does not have shower facilities, you may need to return home to shower before going to work. If a shower is provided, don't hesitate to bring your work clothes and go to work directly from the sleep center. Most patients are leaving our sleep centers no later than 7am. 

 

10. Following my sleep study, how will I get my results?

 

The sleep data is scored or analyzed by a senior technologist, interpreted by a sleep specialist and sent to your ordering physician. Your physician will provide your results and recommend the most appropriate treatment plan for you. This process usually takes 1 to 2 weeks following your sleep study. If you have not heard from your doctor within two weeks after your study, call and schedule a follow-up appointment. 

 

11. What are the typical treatments for a sleep disorder?

 

If you are diagnosed with sleep apnea, the most effective treatment is Continuous Positive Airway Pressure (CPAP). This is an airway pressure device that sits on your bedside table with a connecting hose and mask. The mask is positioned over your nose and held in place by a small strap that wraps around your head. The CPAP unit provides gentle air pressure through your nasal passage to keep your airway open while you sleep. Other treatments for this and other disorders may include: improved sleep hygiene, medications, dental appliances, ENT surgery, lifestyle changes, weight loss programs, and sometimes a combination of several to optimize effectiveness. 

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