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Blog Feature

By: AAST Editor on October 17th, 2017

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Sleep Disorders and Traumatic Brain Injuries

Sleep Technology Trends | Sleep Medicine | Sleep Technologist Advice

Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) is clinically defined as an alteration in brain function, or other evidence of brain pathology caused by an external force. TBI may result from motor vehicle accidents, falling objects, assault, bomb blasts, etc. TBI is a leading cause of death and can cause lifelong disabilities in survivors. According to the Centers for Disease Control, 1.6 to 3.2 million TBI’s are reported in the United States. Following the initial injury, patients may complain of headaches, nausea or vomiting, memory loss, mood changes, and difficulty with attention or concentration.

Sleep disorders are commonly associated with TBI and can cause additional difficulty in recovery and rehabilitation. Such sleep disorders include insomnia, excessive daytime sleepiness, fatigue, parasomnias and apneas. Some studies suggest that up to 70% of patients with TBI experience some type of sleep disturbance. Compared to the general population, there is a higher prevalence of sleep disorders in patients who have suffered from a TBI.

In the Q3 issue of A2Zzz , Mary Ellen Wells, PhD, RPSGT, R. EEG T. and R. NCS T., The University of North Carolina at Charlotte; The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, focuses on this discussion with her article, “The Prevalence of Sleep Disorders in Patients Diagnosed with Traumatic Brain Injury”.

In this article, Wells digs into meta-analysis of current research for Traumatic Brain Disorder (TBI) and the higher prevalence of sleep disorders found in this patient population. Extensive sleep evaluations after TBI may help to overcome underdiagnoses of sleep disorders, behavioral disorders and cognitive decline.

 This article is one of four designated CEC articles in this issue of A2Zzz. AAST members who read A2Zzz and claim their credits online by the deadline can earn 2.00 AAST Continuing Education Credits (CECs) per issue – for up to 8.00 AAST CECs per year. AAST CECs are accepted by the Board of Registered Polysomnographic Technologists (BRPT) and the American Board of Sleep Medicine (ABSM).

To earn AAST CECs, carefully read the four designated CEC articles and claim your credits online. You must go online to claim your credits by the deadline of November 30, 2017.

After the successful completion of this educational activity, your certificates will be available in the My CEC Portal acknowledging the credits earned.

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