What to Expect on the Night of Your Sleep Study

Polysomnogram, what is it and why do I need one?

A Polysomnogram, pronounced “poly-somno-gram,” is simply the technical term for a “sleep study” So, what then is a sleep study?

A sleep study is a complex medical test that measures many parameters. It involves recording a person’s sleeping patterns, breathing, limb and body movements, and heart activity. An in-laboratory test is considered the “gold standard method to confirm the presence of the many unique sleep disorders.

A sleep study is a test to measure how well you sleep and how your body responds to sleep problems. These sleep studies can help your doctor find out if you have a sleep problem and how severe it is.

Sleep studies are important because certain sleep disorders if left untreated, can increase your risk for heart disease, high blood pressure, stroke and other medical conditions. Sleep disorders also have been linked to an increase risk of injury from drowsiness while driving and may result in the elderly suffering falls

Based on your specific medical conditions and sleep habits, a sleep study may be ordered.

These studies can help diagnose:

  • Sleep related breathing disorder, such as obstructive sleep apnea, also known as OSA. OSA is a condition in which a patient stops breathing during sleep.
  • Sleep related movement disorders, as seen in restless legs syndrome or periodic limb movement disorder
  • Sleep related seizure disorders
  • Sleep disorders that result in excessive daytime sleepiness, such as Narcolepsy