A good night's sleep is essential to your wellbeing, and nobody knows that better than the 40 million Americans with chronic sleep issues. Each year, sleep deprivation is linked to thousands of car crashes, and many work-related accidents can be attributed to lack of sleep. What’s more, a pattern of insufficient sleep is associated with a host of health problems, including high blood pressure, heart disease, cardiac arrhythmias, stroke, diabetes, dementia, weight gain, and depression. If you’re dragging through your days feeling foggy and fatigued, our new outpatient Sleep Disorders Program at El Camino Hospital Los Gatos can help you identify and address the cause of your problem.
Dr. Tony Masri serves as the Medical Director for the program. Dr. Masri specializes in sleep medicine and neurology and received his fellowship training at Stanford Hospitals and Clinics.
A Hospital Based Program
Featuring a hotel-like environment, with comfortable beds, private bathrooms and even a complimentary continental breakfast, our sleep disorders program is a unique hospital-based program that offers quality care and sleep disorder management in a comfortable and safe location convenient to residents of the communities of Los Gatos, San Jose, Cupertino, Sunnyvale and Mountain View.
The goal of the program is to meet the growing need within the community of sleep disorders, including insomnia, narcolepsy, obstructive sleep apnea which is a common disorder often associated with heart disease, type 2 diabetes, neurological issues such as depression and obesity.
Professional services at the sleep disorders program include patient evaluation, analysis of sleep study results, diagnosis of any sleep disorders and recommendations for follow up treatment, including surgery if necessary.
To ensure continuity of care, the patient may be referred to a sleep surgeon for surgery; to a dentist for oral appliance therapy; to a cardiologist, endocrinologist or other specialist to follow up on underlying causes, or be given a prescription for a device that can be used at home to regulate breathing during sleep.
Comprehensive care is provided by our team of sleep specialists that includes a sleep medicine physician medical director, a dentist certified in dental sleep medicine and a sleep apnea surgeon.
A Common Culprit: Obstructive Sleep Apnea
While the Sleep Lab is equipped to diagnose the complete range of sleep disorders, obstructive sleep apnea is the most common diagnosis. The condition affects up to 9% of women and 24% of men. This disorder may exacerbate or be a precursor to other conditions, including the following:
- Type 2 diabetes
- Heart disease
- High blood pressure
- Cardiac arrhythmias
- Endocrine issues
The Sleep Lab Process
If your primary care doctor suspects that you may have a sleep disorder, he or she can refer you for a sleep study.
Patients usually check in for the sleep study around 7:30 p.m., at the main hospital reception area at El Camino Hospital Los Gatos. A sleep technologist will escort you to the Sleep Lab, and explain everything that will happen during your visit. You will have a comfortable, private bedroom and bathroom with a pleasant, hotel-like atmosphere. A central monitoring area, where the technicians monitor sleeping patients, is located nearby.
The sleep study, called polysomnography, involves monitoring your body while you sleep. A technician records electrical brain and muscle activity, and measures your breathing throughout the night. The entire process takes approximately 12 hours from check in to check out.
Diagnosis and Management
After the physician sleep specialist analyzes your data, he or she will schedule an appointment to discuss next steps. You will be managed through our comprehensive program which offers a full range of medical, surgical and dental solutions for obstructive sleep apnea. Treatment options may include:
- A prescription for a device that can be used at home to regulate your breathing during sleep
- An evaluation by a dental sleep specialist for consideration of a dental appliance used to treat snoring and obstructive sleep apnea
- A consultation with a sleep apnea surgeon to discuss a full range of treatment options from simple soft tissue surgeries to the most sophisticated maxillo-mandibular advancement surgery
Sleeplessness is a Serious Issue
- An estimated 95 percent of Americans with chronic sleep issues go undiagnosed
- According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, drowsy driving is a factor in more than 100,000 crashes, resulting in 1,550 deaths and 40,000 injuries annually
- Over a period of four years, obstructive sleep apnea increases a person’s risk of having a heart attack or dying by 30 percent
- 30-50 percent of people with heart disease and 60 percent of stroke patients have obstructive sleep apnea
Gender Differences in Sleep Disorders
Insomnia affects both men and women of all ages, but there are differences for each gender. Obstructive sleep apnea is more common and more severe in postmenopausal women. And for men, obstructive sleep apnea is often part of the same spectrum of conditions as erectile dysfunction: high blood pressure, high cholesterol, and type 2 diabetes. We understand these issues and work closely with colleagues from our Women's Hospital and Men's Health Program to ensure a collaborative continuum of care.
Ask your doctor for a referral to the Sleep Disorders Program. Patients may be referred by a primary care physician, a specialist, or a psychiatrist. To learn more about the Sleep Lab, call 408-866-4070 to schedule an appointment.