Screening for Sleep Apnea

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Do I have sleep apnea

 

The most common symptom by far for sleep apnea is snoring. Everyone that has sleep apnea snores but not everyone that snores has sleep apnea. Snoring is likely to be a sign of sleep apnea when it is followed by silent pauses, choking or gasping sounds.  If you have sleep apnea you may also have daytime sleepiness or fatigue, morning headaches, nocturia, difficulty concentrating.  Only a doctor can tell you if you have sleep apnea but there are a couple of screening methods that can help you out.  Two of the most common sleep apnea screening methods feature the STOP BANG questionnaire and Epworth Sleepiness Scale to help you gauge your risk for sleep apnea and how sleepy for are

Get a pen and paper ready to note down your answers to each question.

Talk to  your doctor about your results!

sleeping-in-the-day
 STOP BANG
  • S (snore)
    Do you snore?
  • T (tired)
    Do you feel fatigued during the day?
    Do you wake up feeling like you haven’t slept?
  • O (obstruction)
    Have you been told you stop breathing at night?
    Do you gasp for air or choke while sleeping?
  • P (pressure)
    Do you have high blood pressure or are on
    medication to control high blood pressure?
  • B (BMI)
    Is your body mass index greater than 28?
  • A (age)
    Are you 50 years old or older?
  • N (neck)
    Are you a male with neck circumference greater than 17 inches, or a female with neck circumference greater than 16 inches?
  • G (gender)
    Are you a male?

SCORE: The more questions you checked YES to on the BANG portion, the greater your risk of having moderate to severe OSA.

High risk of OSA: Yes 5 – 8
Intermediate risk of OSA: Yes 3 – 4
Low risk of OSA: Yes 0 – 2

 daytime-sleepiness

Epworth Sleepiness Scale

How likely are you to doze off or fall asleep in the situations described below, in contrast to feeling just tired? This refers to your usual way of life in recent times. Even if you haven’t done some of these things recently, try to work out how they would have affected you. Use the following scale to choose the most appropriate number for each situation:
0 = Would never doze
1 = Slight chance of dozing
2 = Moderate chance of dozing
3 = High chance of dozing

  1. Sitting and reading
  2. Watching TV
  3. Sitting inactive in a public place (e.g. a theater or a meeting)
  4. Sitting in a car as a passenger for a continuous hour
  5. Lying down to rest in the afternoon when circumstances permit
  6. Sitting and talking to someone
  7. Sitting quietly after a lunch without alcohol
  8. Sitting in a car stopped in traffic for a few minutes

SCORE: Add up your score for each scenario. 0–9 Normal range | 10–13 mild sleepiness | 14–24

Even if you did not screen positive make sure you talk to your doctor about snoring and sleep apnea.  Only a doctor can rule out sleep apnea.

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