Sept. 23rd Healthwise: Sleep Studies

By: Cheryn Stone Email
By: Cheryn Stone Email

September 23, 2009

The Sleep Medicine Center at Martha Jefferson opens this week in its new location at the Hilton Garden Inn on Pantops. In this week's Martha Jefferson Healthwise, Dr. Chris Winter explained the different sleeping problems and what exactly a sleep study can do to help.

Dr. Winter says sleep problems are really common and the patient must speak up and seek treatment.

***Click on the video tab to watch the full interview with Dr. Winter***

<>Here is the full script of the interview:

Cheryn: WOULD YOU SPEAK ABOUT HOW COMMON SLEEP PROBLEMS ARE?

Sleep problems are vastly common, they were common before and I think in this economy right now, they are estimated to be more prevalent than ever. For instance, sleep apnea affects 25% of the adult population. Insomnia may be affecting up to one-third of individuals at a given time, these are some of the most common complaints that patients have for their doctors, it's just a matter of acting on that and solving the problem.

Cheryn: WHAT IS A SLEEP STUDY?

A sleep study is a series of test performed in an overnight setting used to evaluate an individual's sleep to figure out if they have some sort of sleep disorder that can be addressed. Our patient is hooked up with various electrodes that measure her brain wave activity, so that's very important with helping us figure out if somebody is asleep or awake or what stage of sleep they are in. With all these devices we can figure out how well she is sleeping, what stage of sleep she is in, and if she is waking up or having difficulty sleeping, why that is happening.

Cheryn: WHAT HAPPENS AFTER THE STUDY IS OVER?

After the study is over, the individual leaves the sleep center the next morning. Then the individuals sleep study is read by a sleep medicine expert, then they will follow up in the sleep medicine clinic to get the results of that study back. I would recommend doing is talking it over first with a primary care physician or sleep specialist in an office setting.


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