Sleep apnea is a very common sleep disorder in the United States that affects thousands of people. The main characteristic of sleep apnea is interrupted sleep due to blockages in the breathing process. While some victims of sleep apnea are aware of their difficulty in sleeping, most other victims do not even know that they have sleeping problems. Instead, they experience fatigue, drowsiness, and an inability to concentrate on their work and studies.
There are different ways of testing for sleep apnea and there are pros and cons that are associated with each method. In this article, we explore the pros and cons of testing for sleep apnea in a lab.
Sleep Monitoring Test
While it is perfectly possible to monitor your sleep in your own home, doctors may often recommend an in-lab sleep study in order to check for signs of sleep apnea. During this process, the medical team is likely to provide a safe and comfortable room where you can get a good night’s sleep. They are most likely to request that you come with your pajamas and anything else that you normally need to get a good night’s sleep.
You must note however that a lab technician is likely to attach a number of wires on to your body in order to help them monitor your breathing levels and many other things. When you sleep, the technical team will keep an eye on your blood pressure as well as your heart rate, your brain waves, your oxygen levels, and possible limb movements.
Pros of In-Lab Sleep Apnea Diagnosis
This kind of test is highly accurate and can give the best data for doctors trying to make a diagnosis of sleep apnea. This is because it takes place in a controlled environment and therefore technicians are able to control for a variety of factors. It is highly suitable for people who are trying to get a medical affirmation of their ability to operate certain machinery or other equipment. In-lab monitoring is also highly effective for people who might have other complications other than sleep apnea. These include heart as well as lung problems.
Disadvantages of In-lab Sleep Apnea Testing
One of the biggest problems with in-lab sleep apnea testing is that many people often struggle to sleep in a strange environment. This is especially so if they have to sleep with wires and other sensors attached to them. As a result, lab technicians may get inaccurate readings. In-lab tests can also be exceedingly expensive, sometimes going way above $1000 per session. There is also the problem of long waiting periods as there are numerous people on the waiting list.
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