Living Well With Troy – Sleep Apnea

Sleep apnea can cause a wide variety of health problems. ENT Specialist Dr. Joel Hoffman with North Atlanta ENT and Allergy, talks about how to diagnose it and possible treatments.

Troy, “Sleep apnea. For everyone at home, what is it?”

Dr. Hoffman, “It’s where you stop breathing at night from upper airway obstruction.”

Troy, “How bad is that for our health?”

Dr. Hoffman, “It can lead to heart disease, high blood pressure, increased risk of stroke, increased depression, and other medical problems.”

Troy, “How are we finding out? If we’re asleep like you just said, how are we finding out that we have it?”

Dr. Hoffman, “We do a sleep study where you take a device home and it measures your sleep one night and you can find out if you have sleep apnea.”

Troy, “You’re saying that we won’t be able to diagnose ourselves, so we’re relying on a partner or feeling sluggish the next day.”

Dr. Hoffman, “Yeah, you just know you’re not sleeping well. Often the partner will bring you into the office and then we’ll order the sleep study to make the diagnosis.”

Troy, “Well that’s what I want to get into right now. When you say sleep study, once you’ve been diagnosed, what are the options of treatment?”

Dr. Hoffman, “CPAP, which is a device to pressurize air to keep the airway open. It works wonderfully and then surgery is another option in some patients.”

Troy, “When you say sleep apnea machine, is that something that’s lifelong?”

Dr. Hoffman, “Typically, unless you would lose a lot of weight and then potentially we could restudy and see if you still need it.”

Categories: Health