A pulmonology sleep study, often referred to as a polysomnography, is a diagnostic test used to assess and diagnose sleep disorders, particularly those related to breathing and respiratory issues during sleep. This study is conducted in a sleep laboratory or center equipped with specialized monitoring equipment.
During a pulmonology sleep study:
Patients are typically admitted to the sleep center in the evening. Before the study, sensors and electrodes are placed on the patient's body to monitor various parameters such as brain activity, eye movements, heart rate, oxygen levels, and breathing patterns.
Throughout the night, while the patient sleeps, these sensors record data that is analyzed by sleep technologists and physicians. This data helps identify disruptions in sleep patterns, breathing abnormalities, or other sleep-related issues.
Sleep technologists or healthcare professionals monitor the patient throughout the study to ensure accuracy in the collected data and to address any immediate concerns.
After the study, specialists review the recorded data to make a diagnosis. Common conditions diagnosed through sleep studies include sleep apnea, periodic limb movement disorder, narcolepsy, and REM sleep behavior disorder, among others.
Based on the findings, the healthcare team develops a treatment plan tailored to the patient's specific sleep disorder. This may include lifestyle changes, medications, or therapies like continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) for sleep apnea.