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Sleep Studies - What to Expect

Sleep Studies - What to Expect

Your St. Mary's Sleep Study -What to Expect

Sleep studies, or polysomnograms, are tests to diagnosis sleep disorders. Typically, your study at St. Mary's Sleep Disorders Center in Evansville, Indiana will be ordered after you have seen a healthcare provider and discussed your sleep problems. These tests reveal how you sleep.

A sleep medicine specialist from St. Mary's Physician Network will perform a comprehensive history and examination focusing on all types of sleep disorders. 

We ask that you bring the completed six-page New Patient Questionnaire with you to the appointment.  This questionnaire usually takes about 45-60 minutes to complete and helps organize critical information needed for review by the sleep specialist.  We encourage you to ask your bed partner, family members or others who have observed you sleeping to assist you in answering some of the questions.  Because of the time involved, failure to bring this completed questionnaire may result in rescheduling of your appointment.

A sleep study records the following information so your doctor can determine the best plan of action for you:

  • Eye movements
  • Heart rate
  • Brain waves
  • Muscle activity
  • Oxygen level
  • Sudden leg or body movements
  • Snoring
  • Breathing patterns and irregularities

At. St. Mary's, your sleep study is done in a comfortable, private room.  Most people don't have problems sleeping during the study.

Before Your Visit

Ask your physician if you should take any of your regular medications prior to your sleep study appointment.  Additionally, there are some important preparations to note, including:

  • Don't drink caffeine or alcohol.
  • Avoid napping.
  • Eat before arriving at the Sleep Disorders Center.  Bring a snack with you if you'll need one before you go to sleep.
  • Bring pajamas, robe, slippers and any other personal hygiene items you need.  You may bring your pillow if you like.

What Happens During the Study?

You should arrive at the Sleep Disorders Center at 7:30 for night testing.  You will be taken to one of our sleep suites, which is similar to a bedroom at home.

Sensors will be attached to your body to monitor your brain activity and other functions while you sleep.  A camera in your room will record any movements your body makes.  After sleeping 6 - 8 hours you will leave the Sleep Disorders Center, usually around 6 or 7 a.m.

After your sleep study is completed, your doctor will receive the results. These results may include information about sleep and wake times, sleep stages, abnormal breathing, the amount of oxygen in your blood and any movement during sleep.

Your doctor will use your sleep study results and your medical and sleep histories to make a diagnosis and create your treatment plan.

© 2014 St. Mary's Health System   |  3700 Washington Avenue  |  Evansville, IN 47750  |  (812) 485-4000