Sleep plays a critical role in the early stages of development in children. It is important to focus not only on the quantity of sleep received but also the quality. While the methods of measuring and evaluating sleep quality are similar to that of adults, there are differences that sleep technologists must consider when testing pediatric patients.
I was a postdoctoral fellow at Argonne National Laboratory and had the pleasure of working with George Sacher. At the time, he was president of the Gerontological Society of America and had spent his life working on ways to increase lifespan. He was a proponent of hormesis, the idea that moderation was the path to a longer life. Of course, some things should be off the list, like a moderate amount of murder.
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The advent of actigraphy in the 1990s made it possible to indirectly record a person’s sleep-wake cycles based on the person’s activity level, with increased activity indicating wakefulness and decreased activity indicating sleep. In actigraphy, a device — an actigraph — which is typically worn on the wrist, continually records movement data over a prolonged time — one week or more.
The AASM released a “Clinical Practice Guideline” for diagnostic testing for OSA.1 Not surprisingly, the guideline is heavy on home sleep apnea testing (HSAT). This replaces a practice parameter and a clinical guideline from a decade ago.