Hanyang Med Rev.  2013 Nov;33(4):227-232. 10.7599/hmr.2013.33.4.227.

Diagnosis of Obstructive Sleep Apnea Syndrome

  • 1Department of Otolaryngology, Asan Medical Center, Univerisity of Ulsan College of Medicine, Seoul, Korea. entysc@gmail.com


Obstructive sleep apnea is a prevalent disease and contributes to consequences like hypertension, diabetes, stroke, cardiac disease, daytime sleepiness, decreased productivity, mood change, and quality of life. The mortality and morbidity due to consequences are related to severity of obstructive sleep apnea. The severity of obstructive sleep apnea is measured by apnea-hypopnea index or respiratory disturbance index. The diagnosis of obstructive sleep apnea is made by polysomnographic findings and/or one of its symptoms (daytime symptoms like unintentional sleep episode during wakefulness, daytime sleepiness, unrefreshing sleep, insomnia, or fatigue, nighttime symptoms like breath holding, gasping, or choking, or bed partner's report about loud snoring, breath stopping). Due to high cost, inconvenience, and availability of in-lab polysomnogrpahy, simple diagnostic tools are suggested. Portable polysomnography has advantages including low cost, home monitoring, and convenience. But portable polysomnography has limitations like safety issues, lead malfunction, sensitivity, and specificity. Moreover, in some patients, portable polysomnography cannot be applied. The standard suggested diagnostic methods and available alternative tools are reviewed.


Sleep Apnea, Obstructive; Sleep Apnea Syndromes; Snoring; Diagnosis; Polysomnography
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