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Blog Feature

By: Tamara Sellman on August 1st, 2017

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This Week in Sleep Medicine: August 1, 2017

Sleep Technologist Advice

While You Were Sleeping: What Sleep Technologists Need to Know This Week

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Your media watchdog for headlines and trends
relevant to sleep technology and patient education.

CULTURE WATCH

"Atrial fibrillation: The dangers of living with an offbeat heart"
WVU MEDICINE
July 25, 2017

From the article: "AFib is a common abnormal heart rhythm that is caused when the heart’s two upper chambers beat erratically and rapidly. This can cause blood clots to form in the heart, which may lodge in an artery or travel to the brain, causing a stroke."

Takeaway:  AFib is a common occurrence in sleep lab patients; it's never a bad idea to help your patients connect the dots between AFib and untreated sleep apnea during an overnight study.

INDUSTRY WATCH

"Somnoware Adds Cloud-Based Sleep Study Scoring Functionality"
SLEEP REVIEW
July 28, 2017 

From the article: "The speed and functionality of scoring in the cloud is on par with doing it on a native desktop, and faster than accessing it for use via a virtual private network (VPN), according to Somnoware."

Takeaway: This is more an option that appeals to the needs of physicians than to technologists, but for this reason, you might find your systems getting upgraded.

TREND WATCH

"Six tips for exercise recovery: It's important for your body after fitness"
STARTS AT 60
July 30, 2017

From the blog post:Sleep is nature’s way of helping our body and mind to recover. 

Takeaway: Athletes at every fitness level and age group are becoming more sleep aware, even sleep savvy. This post shows that even older patients who may be fit should know the value of good sleep to aid in recovery from training. With so many more people choosing fitness as a lifestyle later in life, this is a good trend... as long as they don't forget about sleep habits.

TECHNOLOGY WATCH

"Blue light could be causing eye pain and damage"
RAPID CITY JOURNAL
July 29, 2017

From the article: “ 'Smartphones, LED bulbs, computer screens, are all going to emit the harmful portion of this blue light spectrum,' said Gill. 'And most people are very close to the light source while using it, so exposure is high..' ”

Takeaway: Here's a good secondary argument for those patients who insist on using back-lit electronics in bed after lights out, in the event the "blue light causes insomnia" or "bad sleep hygiene" arguments have failed. 

PHARMA WATCH

"Using Benadryl to Make Kids Sleep Could be Deadly"
DAILY HORNET
July 31, 2017

From the website:Parents are being warned not to use antihistamines like Benadryl to help their children sleep following several deaths in Connecticut, according to ABC News.

Takeaway: If you work with peds (and their parents), this should be vital information to share during a lab session. The casual use of OTC medications as sleep aids for children is far more dangerous than parents know.

HEALTH LITERACY WATCH

"Reaching black men in barbershops could lead to early detection of colorectal cancer"
NYU LANGONE MEDICAL CENTER / NEW YORK UNIVERSITY SCHOOL OF MEDICINE via SCIENCEDAILY
July 24, 2017

From the article: "Black men who enrolled in a patient navigator program at local barbershops were twice as likely to get colorectal cancer screening, report investigators."

Takeaway: Here is a brilliant example of out-of-the-box thinking... if there was a way to reach patients who need sleep health services that wasn't attached directly to a hospital or clinical encounter, maybe this might raise their awareness? Maybe it's at the DMV, or at an airport kiosk, or yes, even a barber shop.

LEGISLATION WATCH

"Speed limiter mandate, sleep apnea stripped from Trump DOT agenda"
COMMERCIAL CARRIER JOURNAL
JULY 24, 2017

From the report: “The rulemaking regarding sleep apnea screening for truck operators would establish protocol for which truck drivers would be required to be tested for obstructive sleep apnea during the medical certification process. The DOT did not indicate when it would attempt to pursue such a rule, if at all. … FMCSA has determined there is not enough information available to support moving forward with a rulemaking action and so the rulemaking will be withdrawn.”

Takeaway: This is a frustrating setback to the rulemaking campaign that our commercial long-haul truckers need to stay safe, and it was quietly eliminated from documentation by the Trump administration back in June. Let's hope the efforts are picked up again soon, and in earnest.


BIO:  Tamara Sellman RPSGT, CCSH curates the sleep health information clearinghouse, SleepyHeadCENTRAL, where she follows sleep health news headlines daily. She is also Web Consultant for the American Sleep Apnea Association, writes MS-related columns for two medical publishers, and contributes as a freelance writer to AAST’s magazine, A2Zzz, and other places.


The 2017 Fall Course, Current Technology Trends in Sleep Medicine, will be held at the Louisville Marriott East in Louisville, KY, from October 13 - 14, 2017. Will you be there?

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