A sleep study is the best way to test for certain sleep disorders like sleep apnea or narcolepsy.

For your sleep study, you will stay overnight at our state-of-the-art Sleep Center located in West Knoxville (map). Data will be collected during the night, while you are asleep, that will help your doctor make a diagnosis and a treatment plan.

Your in-lab sleep study provides your doctor with the most complete evaluation of your sleep.

Note: Most insurance providers have coverage for sleep studies. Our office staff will obtain pre-certification for the sleep study should insurance require one. However, we advise all of our patients to contact their specific provider before arriving for a sleep study to check benefit coverage.

What should I do the day of the test?

  • Keep your regular routine as much as possible.
  • Don't nap.
  • Don't drink caffeine after lunch.
  • Avoid drinking alcohol the day of the test, unless otherwise directed.
  • Plan to eat dinner before arriving.  However, we do have a kitchen area and you may bring snack foods if needed, especially if you are diabetic.
  • Don't use hair sprays or gels since they can interfere with the sleep recording.
  • Please refrain from the use of heavy scented products such as perfumes, lotions, and gels as they can create a breathing problem for some of our patients.

*If you are sick on the day of your scheduled appointment, please call us to discuss rescheduling.   We understand that other circumstances can arise and ask that you provide at least a 24-hour notice if you muct cancel.  Thank you for your consideration.

What should I bring to the sleep center?

You should arrive for testing at 8 p.m. unless otherwise directed.  A technologist will be there to greet you and show you to your sleep room.  You should bring comfortable sleeping clothes (please avoid silk materials).  For male patients, you will be most comfortable for testing purposes in gym shorts or pajama bottoms and a t-shirt.

Feel free to bring any item from home that may help you sleep better.  Please note that we offer a home-like sleeping environment as well as shower facilities for your convenience.  We have small samples of shampoo, soap, toothpaste/toothbrush and razor.  You will need to bring toiletries specific to your needs, including a hair blow dryer, if needed.

Bring any prescribed medications that you take before going to bed or take them before you arrive. It is a good idea to bring any medications that you may need during the night, as our facility will not have access to prescribed medications.

What can I expect when I get to the Sleep Center?

The sleep technologist will ask about your sleep habits. There may be a pre-sleep questionnaire for you to fill out.  Then, you can get ready for bed. There won’t be any other patients in your room and there will be a bathroom for you to use.

The sleep technologist will attach sensors to you. The sensors, which are glued or taped to you, monitor your body while you sleep. Tell the technologist if you are allergic or sensitive to any adhesives.

Please ask the sleep technologist if you have any questions about the process.

Cameras in your room allow the technologist to monitor you while you sleep in case any help is needed. For example, they can fix any equipment that comes loose during the night.

What does the study measure?

  • Brain Waves
  • Heart Rate
  • Breathing
  • Oxygen Levels
  • Leg and Arm Movements


What if I don't sleep during the study?

It might seem like it would be hard to sleep while connected to sensors, but most people sleep enough to allow for a diagnosis.

Occasionally, you may be prescribed medication to help you sleep during the study.

What is a CPAP study?

If you show signs of having moderate to severe OSA, then your sleep technologist may start a CPAP titration study during the night. CPAP stands for Continuous Positive Airway Pressure. The technologist will explain how CPAP works and will fit you for a mask.

CPAP uses air pressure to hold the airway open. A CPAP study measures your response to different levels of pressure. The goal is to find the pressure that keeps your airway open and treats the OSA. At times, other things are added, like oxygen.

If you need CPAP during the night, the technologist will enter your room and put a CPAP mask on you. The mask is attached to a CPAP machine. When you fall asleep, the technologist will monitor and document your response to the CPAP pressures.

Even if the technologist does not use a CPAP on the night of the study, you may still have OSA.

What happens after my test?

In the morning, the technologist will remove all the sensors. The technologist cannot provide the final results of the study.

The information gathered during the sleep study will be reviewed and evaluated by a sleep specialist. Your Summit Medical Group provider will discuss the results with you. It may take several days or a week to properly evaluate your sleep study.