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Continuous Positive Airway Pressure Study (CPAP) at UPMC in Central Pa.

The continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) study is used to determine the correct level of CPAP therapy to treat disordered breathing during sleep, such as snoring or sleep apnea. CPAP therapy uses a small machine that provides steady air pressure through a hose and mask to keep your airways open while you sleep.
Typically, if you are scheduled for a CPAP study, you will be asked to report to the PinnacleHealth Sleep Center at 8:30 p.m. (Unless other accommodating arrangements have been made.)

What To Bring

  • Insurance cards
  • Photo identification
  • A list of all medications you are taking (if you need a medication while in the center bring the medication in original prescription bottle for self-medication)
  • Clothing to sleep in, such as pajamas or a nightgown
  • Toothbrush and toothpaste
  • Hairbrush or comb
  • Hairdryer, if needed
  • Any special pillow that you use
  • Reading materials, such as books or magazines

How To Prepare

To ensure that your study is as accurate as possible, we ask that you wash and dry your hair thoroughly, refrain from using any hair products and remove fingernail polish before you arrive at the sleep center. Also, it is important that you do not nap on the day of your CPAP study.

You may eat normally before your CPAP study, but do not consume any caffeine (such as soda, coffee or tea) after lunch. You may continue to take all medications normally unless you have been instructed otherwise.

What To Expect

When you arrive for your sleep study, you will be greeted by a polysomnography technician. He or she will show you to your room, which will include a full-size bed, a TV with remote control, and a private bath and shower.

After you are comfortable, your technician will attach l wires, called electrodes, to different parts of your body. The electrodes, which will be connected to a computer, will help your technician monitor different elements of your body’s activity, including:

  • Heart rate
  • Nasal and oral airflow
  • Oxygen levels
  • Brainwave activity
  • Respirations
  • Snoring

Your technician will also connect you to the CPAP machine. While you sleep, your technician will adjust the air pressure provided by the CPAP machine to ensure that your airways remain open.

Your technician will be in a separate area while you sleep and will be available if you need any assistance.

We will wake you at approximately 6 a.m. The information necessary for completing you CPAP prescription will be assessed by the Sleep Specialist and a dictation with an interpretation of results and recommendations will be sent to your referring physician. This may take from seven to 10 days. Your initial follow-up will be with the referring physician. A Home Health Care agency, which you will choose, will provide the actual CPAP unit with your prescribed settings. They will instruct you on how to use the equipment, and provide a comfortable mask.

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