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Questions About Mslt


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#1 mayfield

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Posted 18 October 2009 - 08:56 AM

Hello all, I'm brand new here and a little stunned to find myself posting. For a (hopefully) brief history: I'm 36, female, with 3 kids and I'm in graduate school. i just went to a sleep dr. for issues I've had since I was in college: mostly excessive sleepiness and falling asleep in class/at work/when I sit down to study. Yes, I've had sleep paralysis/hallucinations (I thought they were nightmares) and some strange episodes of falling asleep while running (I don't fall down or anything...it's like I wake up and I don't know where I am but I'm still running), but no cataplexy. I go to sleep at night pretty easily (usually), and have always been one to wake up multiple times at night. I've always slept with a light on and a book beside me because I enjoy reading when I wake up and usually fall asleep again fairly soon. I wake up early and refreshed every morning (am a morning person). When I take daytime naps, I wake up feeling good.

Anyway, it just kind of shocked me to have the dr. say he thinks I have narcolepsy after being in his office all of five minutes? I have a sleep study coming up in a few weeks and am not clear on a few things. The sleep center didn't say anything about stopping caffeine prior to the study...but won't that just make me extra sleepy on the day of the test (I usually drink lots of coffee in the morning)? And alcohol? I only drink wine on occasion, but wasn't sure if this would affect things or not (okay, obviously I wouldn't drink on the day of the test...but do I need to stop drinking in the days leading up to the test?). I don't take any other medications. Can I bring a book? The test sounds really boring and I can't even imagine what I will be doing all day.

All right, I have a zillion other questions, but one step at a time, I suppose. Thanks kindly.

#2 Kathleen

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Posted 18 October 2009 - 09:26 AM

I have a sleep study coming up in a few weeks and am not clear on a few things. The sleep center didn't say anything about stopping caffeine prior to the study...but won't that just make me extra sleepy on the day of the test (I usually drink lots of coffee in the morning)? And alcohol? I only drink wine on occasion, but wasn't sure if this would affect things or not (okay, obviously I wouldn't drink on the day of the test...but do I need to stop drinking in the days leading up to the test?). I don't take any other medications. Can I bring a book? The test sounds really boring and I can't even imagine what I will be doing all day.


I imagine all sleep centers have slightly different procedures, but in my experience, they ask you to refrain from caffeine the afternoon of the study. I guess alcohol is a no-no too. But, I would call and ask the sleep center.

Yes bring a book, or something to do between naps. I have found that the MSLT to be exhausting & very boring.
Feel free to ask away- there are lots of people on here that have tons of great information.
Take Care!

#3 ohiolor

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Posted 18 October 2009 - 10:31 AM

Hi Mayfield,
First and foremost...welcome to the NN forum!
My husband (pwn)always recommends to anyone having a sleep study to take your own pillow. You'll be most comfortable using your own. Hopefully, he'll jump in here and give you more suggestions.

Lorrie

#4 mayfield

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Posted 18 October 2009 - 02:36 PM

Thank you both, that is helpful information. Thank goodness for books and the pillow is a great suggestion. I really appreciate it!

#5 axe

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Posted 19 October 2009 - 12:05 AM

Hi Mayfield,

Unfortunatly, Kathleen is correct, the pre-sleep test protocols as well as those for conducting, scoring and interpeting the sleep studies can vary somewhat from one facility to another.

The best way to be sure that you get the most accurate results from your sleep study is to communicate effectively with your Primary Care Physician, Sleep Specialist and Sleep Facility staff about how to prepare for the test. You should also check to be sure that all staff members involved are properly experienced and credentialed .

The Board of Registered Polysomnographic Technologists (BRPT) does this for those who monitor and score sleep studies. Make sure that your sleep technician is a Registered Polysomnographic Technologist (RPSGT).

The American Board of Sleep Medicine (ABSM) certifies Sleep Laboritories and Sleep Centers and makes certain that they have the proper staffing, leadership, equipment and protocols. They also certify Sleep Specialists. Make sure that your sleep doctor is a Diplomate of the American Board of Sleep Medicine (D'ABSM). You may also want to be sure that the sleep doctor is Board Cerified in Neurology. It is commonly felt that a Neurologist is better suited than other medical specialists such as Pulmonologists, Pediatricians, etc. for diagnosing and treating narcolepsy and hypersomnia.

Some of the things that sleep specialists and facilities advise their patients to discontinue before a sleep study are medicines (prescription over the counter and illicit) that have an effect on the nervous system especially stimulants, depressants and antidepressants; alcohol; nicotine in any form; caffeine and other energy foods and drinks; and herbal, natural and homeopathic remedies. Unless the doctor is using the sleep study to evaluate treatment, these and other medicines should be discontinued long enough for them to be flushed from the body and for the body to become normal again. You may also want to avoid spicy, greasy, gas producing and other foods that can cause gastric distress for a few days prior to your scheduled tests.

Menstruation, pre and post menstruation, menopause and perimenopause, pregnancy, caring for a newborn, illnesses, holidays, job changes and other major sources of stress can also affect sleep. But then, when is life without its challenges. Just be open and honest with those conducting and evaluating your sleep study so that they can help you properly.

Make sure that you are getting adequate sleep, rest and exercise and practice proper sleep hygiene for at least the week before the sleep study.

Also ask about personal hygiene products that you use. Makeup, grooming supplies, face and body lotions and creams, hair preparations, razor stubble, nail polish, etc. can make it difficult for the technician to connect the electrodes and sensors.

When you go for your test, you should be prepared to dress comfortably for bed just as you do at home (If you normally sleep in the buff, you may want to wear pajamas, sleep shorts and shirt or night gown for a week or so before the test so you acclimate to sleeping clothed.). Bring your own pillow the ones at the sleep lab never feel or smell quite the same as the one you use at home. If you are on CPAP or other night time respiratory care, you should bring your own face piece and machine. Using your own face piece will make you more certain that the fit is proper and you can often get the lab to check the pressure on the machine. These simple things will make you feel as normal as possible and help assure the results of the test.

Bringing a book, magazine, other light reading or a simple craft project such as sewing, knitting, etc. is a fine idea as it may help you pass the time and stay awake between nap challenges. Do not bring anything that can causes you to become stressed or excited as it may affect the results of the test.

Good luck, I hope that you get the answers you need.

Ramon

#6 mayfield

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Posted 19 October 2009 - 02:11 PM

Ramon, thank you so much, that is very helpful and will definitely help me make sure I apply my own due diligence to get to the bottom of these issues. I appreciate it greatly. I think it is mostly sleeping in a new place (with someone watching!) that is creeping me out, so your tips are well taken.

-May

#7 estilrose

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Posted 24 October 2009 - 02:10 AM

I wish I had taken my own pillow! LOL the Dr. and the techs commented on my disrupted sleep which I never really experience at home. I think it was a combination of the myriad of wires attached to you and of course, not having my own pillow with it's comfortable feel/smell.

For in-between the naps, I had the television and my laptop. I would listen to my music on the computer, play a game-not a stress inducing one, or scan my forums.