Across the globe more than a million exhausted people with sleep apnea—a sleep and breathing disorder caused when throat muscles relax and block the airway during sleep—get into car accidents, causing over a thousand deaths every year.
Apnea is linked to obesity, heart disease, diabetes, an additional $3.4 billion in medical costs, and $16 billion in auto collision costs. Even though apnea has telltale signs (loud snoring, daytime fatigue), it remains totally undiagnosed in almost 75 percent of the people.
Polysomnography, the only diagnostic sleep study for sleep apnea is not cheap generally. the standard medical sleep study, requires a medical technician to attach 22 wires to a person’s body and monitor them all night long. The average cost is nearly $3,000. This is quite an out of the pocket expense for anyone. Follow-up tests are even more cost bearing and burdensome. The idea of doing clinical sleep studies once a month to monitor progress is a diagnostic crack-pipe fantasy. Read the rest of this entry