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Taking sleep to new altitudes
Benefits of a Sleep Study
Mike Hosford
After too many sleepless nights, Mike Hosford’s specialist recommended a sleep study. Armed with information from his sleep study at WellStar’s East Cobb Health Park’s Sleep Center, his physician helped him get back to feeling rested and energized for his job as production operator for Lockheed Martin.

Every day Mike Hosford has his head in the clouds as a production operator for Lockheed Martin. But when his head hit the pillow, he wasn’t going anywhere. Hosford, like many Americans, suffers from sleep apnea.

In order to improve his sleep apnea, Hosford regularly used several machines over the years; including a continuous positive airway pressure machine (CPAP), a bi-level positive airway pressure machine (BiPAP) and an automatic positive airway pressure machine (APAP). These machines were supposed to control his breathing, but his sleep apnea was still not under control. His latest machine was 10 years old and not doing its job. Hosford was waking up throughout the night so much that he was exhausted during his waking hours.

“My machine was so old that I could not customize it to fix the specific issues I had been having,” said Hosford.

After visiting with Jeffrey Michaelson, M.D. he decided that an updated sleep study would be helpful to clarify the settings he needed to be on in order to get the best night sleep.

When Hosford arrived at WellStar East Cobb Health Park for his sleep study, he was connected to machines that measured his breathing pattern, his oxygen status, the electrical activity of his brain and heart, as well as the movement of chin, limb muscles and eyes.

“The nurse talked me through the whole process and made me feel comfortable,” he said.

Based on the study results, Hosford’s sleep specialist recommended he adjusted settings using a new BiPAP device.

“Mr. Hosford’s case stands out,” said Dr. Michaelson “Over the course of several years, he failed breathing tests with both the CPAP and APAP machines, which is rare. But, he passed the study with new settings on the BiPAP machine. This is a great example of why patients should not give up solving a medical issue.”

Following the sleep study, Hosford saw results immediately.

“It is a huge improvement, it is quieter and has a better humidifier,” he said. “Since I have gotten the machine I am more restful, I sleep through the night and I have a lot more energy. I wish I had done this sooner.”

According to Dr. Michaelson, the short term benefits of having a sleep study include feeling better rested upon awakening, less fatigue, more stamina and better cognitive abilities. Long term benefits include lower chance of developing heart disease, stroke and hypertension, and better control of blood sugar.

“I have patients that have forgotten their BiPAP machines at home when they leave for a road trip, and have driven hours back home to get it because they cannot sleep without it,” Dr. Michaelson said.

And now that he’s awake enough to be his best at work and at home, Hosford has noticed others around him suffering from lack of sleep. He laughs when he admits that he frequently finds himself “prescribing” sleep studies to the exhausted people in his life.

Dr. Jeffrey Michaelson practices at WellStar Pulmonary Medicine at WellStar East Cobb Health Park. For an appointment, call 770-422-1372.