Mountain States Health Alliance Sleep Center
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Sleep Study

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a Sleep Study

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Sleep Study FAQs

What if I can't make the appointment?

Please notify us as soon as possible if you know you will not be able to keep your scheduled appointment - this allows us to offer that time to another patient. Refer to your confirmation letter to obtain a phone number for the lab.

How long does the study take?

The sleep study will last from the time of your scheduled appointment until approximately 6 the following morning.

Will the sleep study hurt?

No. No invasive procedures are involved with the sleep study - we do not draw any blood, and all of our electrodes are attached with water-soluble adhesive and may be reinforced with medical-grade tape.

What if I don't sleep?

Our sleep center strives to be as close to a home-like environment as possible, but we recognize that it will not be a "normal" night. Very rarely does a patient not sleep an acceptable amount of time during the study. Come to the center relaxed, and do not worry about being unable to fall asleep, as this will only intensify any difficulty you may have.

How are sleep studies performed?

When you arrive at the sleep lab, you will be taken directly to your room so you can familiarize yourself with the room and prepare for bed. Our technician will then attach monitoring electrodes to various locations on your head, chest and legs. The term "electrode" simply means a small disk made of silver, gold or tin that is taped or glued to the skin and is easily removed - NO electric current or shock will occur through the electrodes; they simply monitor your body's vital signs.
You will go to sleep naturally - we will not administer any sleep-inducing medications. All of your routine medications should be taken as you take them on any other day.

What about safety?

You will be located in a room with an intercom system that allows you to be in contact with our technologist if needed. Also, our center's entrance doors are locked after each patient arrives and remain so for the remainder of the night.

What are they looking for when I have a sleep study?

We look for aspects of your sleep that explain why you might have:
  • Daytime sleepiness
  • Breath-holding episodes and snoring
  • Un-refreshing sleep
  • Abnormal movements of the legs and arms
  • Abnormal behaviors at night that might be harmful

How do you expect me to sleep with all those wires on?

Typically patients do sleep despite the wires. The rooms are comfortable and relatively quiet with only one patient per room. You might bring a pillow or blanket that you find comfortable. If you wish, you may read in bed prior to the study or spend time in the TV room to try and maintain your regular routine. Generally patients are in bed between 10:30 p.m. and 11:30 p.m.

Despite having all these "wires," you are allowed to roll over and change position. The wires are quite resilient to movements. If anything is uncomfortable, the technologists can usually fix it. None of the wires inflict pain. Bathroom breaks are permitted and not an inconvenience to the technologist. We would rather you go to the washroom than suffer.

It is recognized, however, that you may not sleep in the laboratory exactly as you would at home. Generally this does not cause a problem in obtaining a good diagnosis from your sleep study. You can bring with you a pillow, blanket or other items that aide you in your normal sleep routine.

What else may happen at a sleep study?

If the technologists notice some breathing irregularities that may be disturbing your sleep, they may ask that you try wearing a special mask used to maintain the airway for more regular breathing. Your sleep may be videotaped. Let the technologist know if you have any difficulty in this regard.

Can I smoke while having my sleep study?

For your safety and health, all Mountain States Health Alliance Sleep Labs have a no smoking policy.

Can my family doctor get a copy of the results?

Yes, your family doctor will receive a copy of the sleep lab results generally in 7-10 days.  

What about my privacy?

At our facility you will have a private room. While all of our patients are monitored by closed-circuit television, it is not constantly viewed. The purpose of the video is to monitor for body jerks/spasms that may be interfering with your sleep and to aid your physician in accurate interpretation of your study.

Should I take my regular medications?

Take ALL of your prescribed medication unless instructed otherwise by your referring physician. Please be sure to list all of your medications on your Patient Questionnaire.

Can I eat and drink as usual?

You may eat as usual, but we do ask that you refrain from consuming any alcoholic or caffeine-containing beverages after noon the day of your study.

What should I wear to the study?

Wear something that you will be able to sleep in comfortably, but we recommend shorts and a T-shirt for our male patients, and two-piece pajamas work well for our female patients. We do not recommend long gowns as they interfere with the preparations for the test.

Can I bring my own pillow?

Yes. You may bring a favorite pillow or blanket, though bedding will be provided.

Can someone stay in the room with me?

Yes. If you would be more comfortable or require extra assistance through the night, someone is welcome to stay with you. We have special chairs in most rooms that fold out into beds.

If you have a sleep disorder, talk with your doctor to see about getting help.

For more information, call: 423-431-6816

For scheduling, call: 423-431-1709.
If you are outside of our local toll free-area, call 1-800-659-6762.