Sleep Testing in Glendale

Diagnostic testing in a state-of-the-art facility

One of the best ways to diagnose sleep disorders is to observe and record how your body and brain behave and respond as you sleep. The Sleep Disorders Center at Adventist Health Glendale offers a variety of sleep studies performed and assessed by specially trained physicians and technicians.

Overnight sleep assessment

An overnight sleep assessment is a controlled, in-depth study of the activities of the brain and body during sleep. Patients normally arrive between 8 p.m. and 10 p.m. to prepare for the study, then spend the night in a specially equipped private room. You are free to go home soon after you wake up the next morning.

During the assessment, the Sleep Disorders Center staff measure several functions including:

  • Brain waves
  • Eye movement
  • Heart rate
  • Respiratory movements
  • Air flow
  • Blood oxygen levels
  • Muscle movements in the leg

Monitoring each of these functions gives the Sleep Disorders Center staff an idea of:

  • When you are awake and asleep
  • The depth of your sleep
  • How often you wake up during the night
  • What causes you to wake up
  • Your breathing patterns during sleep
  • Other important clues that provide an overall picture of your sleep activities

Records made during the sleep assessment, called polysomnographs, are interpreted by a board-certified sleep specialist and the Sleep Disorder Center's medical director. From there, a report is sent to your personal physician, along with a recommendation for how to treat your sleep issues.

Split study

A split study helps Sleep Disorders Center staff determine if treating sleep apnea will make a difference in your quality of sleep. During part of the overnight sleep assessment, you are placed on CPAP (continuous positive airway pressure) to determine if that device eliminates your sleep apnea and improves your sleep.

Multiple sleep latency test

The multiple sleep latency test (MSLT) helps to determine if you are abnormally sleepy during the day and how severe the daytime sleepiness is.

During an MSLT, you go into a specially equipped, dark room during daytime hours and attempt to fall asleep. This experiment is repeated four or five times during the day. A Sleep Disorders Center staff member observes you on a closed-circuit television monitor to see how long it takes you to fall asleep.

Each one of the nap tests lasts for 20 minutes. People who are not abnormally sleepy will take at least 10-12 minutes to fall asleep or will not fall asleep at all. Those who fall asleep in less time have some degree of sleep disorder. Those who fall asleep in five minutes or less have a severe sleep deficit.

If the MSLT shows signs of a sleep disorder, the Sleep Disorders Center staff may perform further tests to discover the cause of the daytime sleepiness, such as insufficient sleep syndrome, sleep apnea or, in rare cases, narcolepsy. Your treatment will be based on the root cause of your sleepiness.