That’s right, going to an overnight polysomnography(PSG) sleep test in a lab or hospital can be a very expensive event. It can be so expensive that patients many times cannot afford the copay that is required. This is a problem with in lab sleep studies.
For many people, when a doctor tells them they have symptoms of obstructive sleep apnea, they really don’t know what to think. Some people go home and look on the computer for information about sleep apnea or snoring. Some people even go the extra mile and look into treatments and cures for sleep apnea. But, before anyone can really understand how bad their potential obstructive sleep apnea really is, they need to be tested. There are just a few different ways to have a full sleep study.
Sleep Lab Testing Method for Diagnosing Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA)
The sleep lab is the older or old fashioned way to test for sleep apnea. This involves a patient spending the night away from home and being monitored for how many apnea events they have throughout the night. There is diagnostic equipment attached to the patient that is reading many different channels which will uncover if a patient really has obstructive sleep apnea. Channels like pulse, oxygen, air flow, brain waves, body movement, apneas, hypopneas, and upper airway resistance is all measured. The only potential problems are that patients are connected to many different nodes or wires, and in an enviornment which is not very similar to their home. For this reason along with the fact that there is an overnight sleep tech person from the sleep lab watching you sleep all night, its hard for people to create a realistic night of sleep to be monitored. And of course, the costs for all of this are very very expensive. Many times, the costs for an overnight sleep test to diagnose obstructive sleep apnea can cost over two-thousand dollars ($2000).
At Home Portable Sleep Testing for Obstructive Sleep Apnea
The other option that patients have is wearing a small testing device for one night in the patient’s home to diagnose obstructive sleep apnea. This sleep testing device will also measure all of the same channels that are measured in a sleep lab, but, the patient can be tested for OSA in their own home. The costs for portable sleep testing for OSA are only a fraction of the costs compared to having a sleep test in a lab or hospital, and for that reason alone, many patients opt for this type of test. As the years have moved on, home sleep testing has began to gain huge popularity with both patients and physicians all over the world, and is expected to eliminate the need for in lab sleep testing for obstructive sleep apnea in the near future.