Willingboro, New Jersey (PRWEB) July 02, 2013
Patients of the Neurodiagnostic/Sleep Lab at Lourdes Medical Center of Burlington County now have the option to undergo testing for sleep apnea and other sleep disorders in the comfort of their home via a mobile sleep diagnostic unit, which measures breathing patterns, heart rate and oxygen levels, as well as detects abnormalities during sleep.
The Alice PDx portable sleep testing system by Philips Respironics enables patients to be tested outside of the sleep lab without compromising study results. The small, wearable sleep diagnostic device provides easy installation and transforms any bed in a house, hospital, hotel or nursing home into a virtual sleep lab.
“We are excited to offer patients this convenient and effective option to help diagnose their sleep disorder,” said Scott Sharetts, MD, Medical Director of the Neurodiagnostic/Sleep Lab at Lourdes Medical Center of Burlington County. “While routine exams and an overnight sleep study are still recommended, at-home sleep tests are viable alternatives that produce essentially the same results.”
After a night of sleep, the patient’s data is downloaded and measurements are sent to the sleep laboratory. The lab’s team of sleep experts interpret the results and collaborate with the patient’s surgeon or physician to diagnose the sleep disorder and help guide a plan of action.
While home testing has increased in recent years, the American Academy of Sleep Medicine (ASSM) recommends that an established sleep center manage such testing. In line with these recommendations, the experienced staff of certified physicians and technologists at Lourdes’ comprehensive sleep center oversee at-home testing from start to finish - from instructing patients on how to use the unit to creating a customized treatment plan.
Studies show that patients with probable moderate-to-severe obstructive sleep apnea, and no significant co-morbid medical or sleep conditions, can gain a safe, reliable diagnosis from home sleep studies. Advocates of at-home testing list numerous benefits such as a more natural sleep environment for patients, less need for retesting and thus, more cost effective, and increased patient satisfaction.
Despite an estimated 40+ million Americans suffering from chronic sleep disorders, the vast majority of people never seek help for their affliction. Sleep disorders such as sleep apnea affect many different areas of one’s health, putting added stress on the heart, and can be problematic if left untreated.
“We are hopeful that by eliminating some of the barriers involved with conducting an in-hospital sleep study, such as re-arranging family and work schedules and fear of an overnight stay at the hospital, that more individuals will make their health a priority and chose at-home testing to address their sleep issues,” added Dr. Sharetts.
If you suffer from a sleep disorder, contact your primary care physician or call the Neurodiagnostic/Sleep Lab at (609) 835-3025 for more information or to schedule a consultation.