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Author Topic: So, anyone ever had a sleep study?  (Read 1622 times)
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swizzlest
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« on: October 15, 2004, 07:18:43 AM »

Well, I get to.  Wooo doggies.

That's right, my doctor theorizes that I have sleep apnea.  The sleep medicine specialist agrees this is a very real possibility.  So, next Thursday I go in for a sleep study.  They get to hook me up to a bunch of electrodes and monitors and watch me sleep.  Kinda creepy.

Anyone else done it?  What's it like?  

Anything anyone's got for me on anything like sleep studies or sleep apnea in terms of personal experience would be greatly appreciated.  

Thanks!
Mike
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Thin_J
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« Reply #1 on: October 15, 2004, 07:37:32 AM »

My dad's friend named Rick did one of these once on a recommendation from his wife.

They discovered the he stopped breathing for periods over 15 to 20 seconds far too often to get a healthy night's sleep in. They also found some issues with his heartbeat that changed to irregular patterns while he was sleeping too.

Mind you, this guy is like 6 feet tall and weighs like 350 pounds, but it's one of those things where if you have trouble sleeping I'd say go for it. It might save you some real trouble down the road.
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HarveyB
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« Reply #2 on: October 15, 2004, 11:45:57 AM »

I had sleep apnea, and went through two sleep studies - when it was diagnosed, and again to confirm that it had been cured.

First of all, the study itself - not too bad. They  tape about a dozen sensors to head, chest, wrists, etc. to monitor breathing, heart rate, etc.  It takes a little while to get comfortable enough to sleep, but you adjust pretty quickly.

If you do have sleep apnea, there are several treatments available. If you are heavy, it may just be a matter of diet.  Sleep apnea is often weight-related. Next step is sleeping with a C-PAP, which is an oxygen mask attached to a compressor that forces air down your nose. If the testers think you have apnea, they'll wake you to strap one on and see if it helps. Hope you don't mind sounding like Darth Vader.

My ex-wife thought that the compressor was more annoying than my snoring, so the next step (and most people don't need this) is surgery. Some people have a uvula (that little piece of tissue that hangs down in the back of your throat) that is too big.  That was my problem. Most people can have it shaved a bit with laser surgery, but that wouldn't have worked for me. I had a UPP, which is conventional surgery removing most of the uvula.  That is the most radical treatment for sleep apnea, and doesn't happen too often.

The surgery wasn't bad, but recovery was awful.  For about a week, whenever I swallowed, it felt like I was trying to swallow a golf ball studded with steel spikes. The pain medication made it feel like I was trying to swallow a golf ball without the spikes.  This was all 7 years ago, and to this day swallowing still feels a little weird.

This all sounds bad, but the first time you wake up in the morning feeling rested and refreshed instead of exhausted, you realize it's all worth it.

Good luck.
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mb737
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« Reply #3 on: October 15, 2004, 01:10:32 PM »

The title of this thread is SOOOOOO misleading!

  What about the nocturnal co-ed hijinks, eh?  "Hey, why don't you come on over to my place for a "sleep study"?"  Yes, a "sleep study", that's what we'll call it! smile
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Incendiary Lemon
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« Reply #4 on: October 15, 2004, 01:17:48 PM »

>> What everyone else has said.

Sleep Studies are just dull, no worries.
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msteelers
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« Reply #5 on: October 15, 2004, 01:37:26 PM »

My brother went through one around Thanksgiving. He said he never really got to sleep much because they woke him up after every hour. They gave him the mask and he hated sleeping with it, so gave up on it.
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ericb
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« Reply #6 on: October 15, 2004, 02:38:40 PM »

I had one too.  One thing to tell you in advance - bring pajamas.  I did not get the letter they sent where they tell you what to bring so I showed up ready for the study to sleep in my boxers only...except they have to hook up and anyone else there up first with the electrodes and it's not private.  Also eat a good dinner, go to the bathroom and smoke your last one (if you smoke) before going up...you won't be coming back out before it's over.  

They also found I had sleep apnea and it was bad enough that I bypassed the cpap machine and went straight to surgery (very rare with a HMO).  The surgery is a whole other thread though and the worst week after of my life but almost every day has been better since.

If you do have it and get it fixed you will not believe the absolute difference after it's fixed.  I went from being groggy, tired, falling asleep driving after 9 hours of sleep to fully awake, functional and alert on 7 hours.  I breathe better, sleep better and think clearer.
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Steron
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« Reply #7 on: October 15, 2004, 03:24:08 PM »

My mother just went through this and ended up getting one of those machines that you wear when you sleep.

My finace says I snore like a beast at night and sometimes stop breathing. My mom and her finally rode my ass enough to make me go see my regular doctor. They sent me to an ENT. I go next Friday.  Every time I get any type of exam, they all say the same thing. "Wow! You have huge tonsils!". Last time I went to the doc, last week, he commented "I'm shocked you can breath through those". My assumption is that I will have to have my tonsils out. I guess I will know Friday.

I do know that I sleep over eight hours a night and I always seem to be tired.  I would be nice to sleep and wake up rested and refreshed.
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Juntei
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« Reply #8 on: October 15, 2004, 04:33:09 PM »

I've had two studies done, one for the initial analysis and a follow up a few years later due to weight gain. It was concluded the first time that I had sleep apnea and the second time that my pressure needed to be increased. I really think I need to just exercise and get some of my weight off and see if it helps.
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UsulofDoom
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« Reply #9 on: October 15, 2004, 04:42:04 PM »

I had one too. I had something like 220 times I stopped breathing . The longest I stopped was 48 seconds. I use a C-pap now. Feel a lot better now.
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Misguided
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« Reply #10 on: October 15, 2004, 08:02:33 PM »

*stands up...scans the room*

Hi, my name is Misguided and I have sleep apnea.

Chorus Hi. Misguided

*sits*

Ok, now that that's out of the way. Yeah I diagnosed myself with sleep apnea a number of years ago now. For many, apnea is NOT weight-related, but for me, it is. It is my belief that my apnea isn't really obstructive, but cental, meaning that it results from weak neurological impulses to the muscles of respiration. My breathing actually stops when I'm awake (as if I were holding my breath, but I'm not doing so deliberately).

One thing to understand about apnea is that your subjective experience and the degree to which your day to day life is disrupted may not necessarily correlate strongly with the severity of symptoms they measure. Some people have severe apnea and only know it because someone else sleeps with them. Others can have very mild apnea, yet thhey are a total wreck, fall asleep while driving, etc.

Anyway, I have used a C-Pap, though I don't currently (I probably should again...my weight has gone up some).

The study itself is not bad, provided the room is reasonably comfortable. Bad enough you're in a strange place, but one of the studies I had done the temperature was very warm.
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mori
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« Reply #11 on: October 15, 2004, 10:25:46 PM »

I had sleep apnea also.  I was totally exhausted and a wreck.  Couldn't keep my eyes open driving into work in the morning, would fall asleep at work, and trying to drive home in the afternoon was very dangerous.  I could sleep 18 hours straight on the weekends and still be tired.  Don't know how I did it for as long as I did.   The doctor diagnosed me with a failing thyroid and that threw my metabolism all out of whack, causing me to gain weight.  Started to take  the medication, dropped 30 lbs. and I get quality sleep again.
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swizzlest
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« Reply #12 on: October 21, 2004, 06:33:27 AM »

Well, in just about 4.5 hours, I head in to get this sleep study dealie.

I appreciate everyone's responses so far.  It's been good to know what the experience will be like.  My Dad actually has sleep apnea and has had several studies, but won't say more about them than that he doesn't sleep well there.  I tend not to be, I'm the type of person who can sleep anywhere, anytime.  So, hopefully that'll help.

I've been a little nervous all night, but that's just me occasionally.  smile  It doesnt' help I slept poorly yesterday.  Went to bed at 5:30, woke up at 10:00.  Took two naps, but never got up to normal sleep level, I think.

Anyway....

I'll let you know how it goes, oh supportful CGers.

Mike
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