How Do You Test For Sleep Apnea?
There are generally accepted assessment questionnaires that will allow you to better evaluate your risk of OSA. Talk to your doctor if Sleep Apnea is suspected. Your doctor may have an assessment questionnaire to review with you; or he/she may refer you to a Sleep Specialist or to a Sleep Apnea clinic such as VitalAire.
The sleep apnea assessment form along with a clinical evaluation will provide a guide for your risk of OSA. If sleep apnea is suspected, overnight tests are then ordered to evaluate whether you experience apneas during the night, which are associated with drop in blood oxygen levels.
How Can I get Tested for Sleep Apnea?
As public awareness of Obstructive Sleep Apnea grows, so does the demand to be tested. VitalAire offers a variety of options from overnight oxygen level testing to OSA diagnostic programs.
Types of Sleep Apnea Tests
In Canada, Sleep Tests to diagnose Obstructive Sleep Apnea can be conducted in Sleep Labs, hospitals or homes. Three common types of studies are available:
- Level I Sleep Study (Polysomnogram) is available in a Sleep Lab or Hospital and consists of supervised overnight monitoring of breathing, physical movements, brain wave activity and many other parameters.
- Level 3 Sleep Study is conducted in your home. The device records your oxygen levels, heart rate, airflow, snoring and other parameters during the night.
Sleep Apnea Testing is available through VitalAire in:
- British Columbia
- Nova Scotia
- New Brunswick
- Prince Edward Island
In Ontario and Manitoba we work closely with Sleep Labs who provide OSA Diagnostics.
What is the Home Sleep Apnea Test?
The overnight sleep apnea test is simple and painless. It consists of applying (taping) 3 or 4 sensors to your body and the going to sleep in your own bed.
PIck up the monitor from a VitalAire office and apply the 3 or 4 sensors to your body
Small nasal tube to monitor breathing, chest belt, a small finger (light) sensor to monitor oxygen levels (note: different units use different sensors)
Go to sleep in your own bed.
Home sleep apnea studies are typically scored by a Registered Polysomnographic Technician and interpreted by an Independent Physician Specialist with an expertise in sleep diagnostics.
Results are usually available in 2 – 3 weeks.