I have been lurking around here since scheduling a sleep study a couple of months ago--what a wonderful resource this is! At the time the initial sleep study was scheduled, they also scheduled a CPAP titration for next week. It took quite some time--maybe 6 weeks or longer?--from the time I requested the PSG to the scheduled date, so maybe they schedule CPAP titration at the same time so patients who need it don't have to wait so long.
I am 35 year old female, married with one young child, obese but otherwise quite healthy; lab tests & blood pressure are always good. I chase my kid around a lot and we have busy lives so I am not sedentary, but I rarely exercise or use our (expensive
) gym membership except to take my child to the pool. I have heard concerns/complaints about my nighttime breathing and/or snoring since I was a teenager (and skinny!). Motivation to get sleep study occurred after vacationing with 2 doctor friends in the past year, both of whom seperately expressed serious concern about my snoring and ability/need to sleep during the day at the drop of a hat. Of course husband also complains that I snore loudly.
My all-night sleep study occurred last weekend. It went fine--I slept normally, felt comfortable, etc.
Someone from my PCP's office called yesterday morning and said, "Your test results show you do have sleep apnea, so go ahead and keep your CPAP titration appointment." I was told that I could pick up the test results from the office if I wanted. I assumed that my apnea was mild and weight-related, but decided to pick up the sleep study report just out of curiosity. It was a seriously rude awakening. Here are my results:
Total sleep time: 7H 23M
Stage Shifts 97
Arousals 107 (arousals per hour=16)
Latency to sleep: 1.5 min
REM latency: 166 min
Stage N1 Sleep 13.8% of total sleep time
Stage N2 Sleep 68.8% of total sleep time
Stage N3 Sleep 0.00% of total sleep time
Stage R Sleep 17.4% of total sleep time
Sleep Efficiency 90.7%
Mean sleep % SpO2=90
Min % SpO2 = 57
% of sleep time with SpO2 < 88% = 19.1
Obstructive Apnea Index=0.4
Central Apnea Index=20.3
Additional apneic events during wake epochs: 15
Cheyne Stokes breathing: No
Snoring: Frequent, Very Loud
Interpretation: This baseline PSG demonstrates severe sleep-disordered breathing in the form of obstructive and central sleep apnea, worse in REM sleep. The patient's sleep-disordered breathing was characterized mostly by hypopneas with clear obstructive features, but also by excessive central apneas (not in a periodic pattern). Many of the scored central apneas were associated with subtle obstructive features. In REM sleep, persistent O2 saturation was noted, with the patient's oxygen saturation often remaining 76%-84% due to the frequency of obstructive hypopneas, reaching a nadir of 57%. In the absence of respiratory events, it is also notable that the patient's respiratory rate most often ranged between 9 and 10 breaths per minute, which is borderline bradypneic.
So...have I been killing myself while I sleep? I was not upset about this until I saw the sleep study--I wasn't delighted
at the idea of the CPAP, but felt OK with it. I figured that if nothing else, my husband would be happy not to have to listen to my snoring. Then when I read the study...well, I started to feel a little panicky, like I just barely missed being hit by a train. I am a little bit afraid to go to sleep now, which is silly since I've probably had this most of my life.
As far as I know, there are no future plans for consultation or treatment except to attend the CPAP titration in a week. We attend a huge medical system for our health care, which is great in many ways but also painfully bureaucratic at times. I *think* that I am supposed to see my PCP if I have any questions or concerns, but I feel that these results are so severe that I would like to speak with a sleep specialist. My insurance allows me to self-refer to a specialist, but the medical system gets picky about it (for example, they wouldn't let me schedule my own sleep study--had to go through PCP). I guess I am wondering if I should spend the time it would take to get through to a specialist ASAP, or just take it easy, see how the CPAP titration goes, and follow up from there if necessary.
I am really very calm, rational, and pragmatic about most things, especially medical issues, but this has really thrown me for a loop. My mom did not help matters--when I told her about the results, she blurted, "Wow, think about how bright you would have been if you had been getting all the oxygen you need all those years!" Gee, thanks, Mom! And she's a nurse!
(I'm giving her the benefit of the doubt and assuming it just came out wrong.
) So I guess that in addition to feeling like I cheated death, I also do wonder how my life has been impacted. Which is stupid, because I feel happy and have a great life, so what difference does "what might have been" make?
Sorry for the rant...I suppose that I am seeking advice about next steps as well as reassurance that this is normal...thank you!