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Sleep Investigations

  • Christopher Kosky
Chapter

Abstract

Investigations have a key role in the diagnosis of sleep disorders because the patient remembers little whilst asleep. In most medical conditions, the patient’s history and examination is paramount in the process of reaching a diagnosis. During sleep, amnesia makes the patient’s history incomplete or unreliable. Memory during sleep can also be distorted. The hypnagogic hallucinations associated with narcolepsy or the confusional arousals in non-rapid eye movement (NREM) sleep parasomnias leave the patient unsure of what is real and what was dreamed. Often the clinician relies on a collateral history from the patient’s bed partner if one is available, but the bed partner may have moved out of the room because their own sleep is disturbed by the patient’s snoring, restlessness, limb movements or parasomnia. Moreover, when examining the patient, there are few clinical signs of an underlying sleep disorder. For these reasons, investigations are an essential part of the diagnostic criteria of many sleep conditions.

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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Pulmonary Physiology and Sleep MedicineSir Charles Gairdner HospitalNedlandsAustralia
  2. 2.University of Western AustraliaCrawleyAustralia
  3. 3.West Australian Sleep Disorders Research InstituteQueen Elizabeth 2 Medical CentreNedlandsAustralia

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