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Diagnostic Tests for Hypersomnia

Many people experience excessive drowsiness during inappropriate time of the day and sleep for overly long periods during the night without feeling refreshed and well-rested as they wake up the next day. If you are experiencing these symptoms, you better seek medical consult as soon as possible, because, you may possibly be suffering from hypersomnia. Hypersomnia is a medical condition or one of the many common sleep disorders that affects at least 5% of all teenagers and early adults. There are 3 different types of hypersomnia. Hypersomnia if not treated or managed properly can have bad effects to the sufferer’s overall health and it can also affect the sufferer’s overall life, including social life.

Assessing for Hypersomnia

Diagnostic Tests for Hypersomnia.jpg

Diagnostic Tests for Hypersomnia

Before the doctor recommends diagnostic exams or tests to be performed, the doctor will first and foremost assess the patient’s sleeping habits, how many hours to the patient sleep during the night, constant waking up in the middle of the night, and how often does the patient fall asleep during daytime. Aside from acquiring the patient’s sleeping habits, the doctor will also assess the patient for any emotional disturbances and ask the patient for the list of his or her medications. Certain medications and emotional disturbances or problems can possibly cause drowsiness during the day and let the patient sleep for extended hours during the night.

Diagnostic Exams for Hypersomnia

After acquiring all necessary information and details, the doctor will then decide whether the patient will have to undergo various exams and tests for further evaluation. Here are some diagnostic tests that can help in the diagnosis of hypersomnia:

  1. Blood Tests, such as Complete Blood Count, etc. – Blood tests are usual diagnostic tests in any medical facility. Blood tests will show certain levels and percentages of various blood components. Any abnormalities in the blood components can suggest a certain medical condition or it can help in determining the cause of the problem. In hypersomnia, a low blood count, such as in anemia, and/or a problem in the thyroid gland can be a potential cause.
  2. Computed Tomography Scan or CT Scan – This is an imaging test that produces cross sectional images of the brain or whatever specific area of the body. CT Scan in hypersomnia is usually in the brain to help in determining or detecting neurological problems, such as multiple sclerosis. Multiple sclerosis can be an underlying medical condition for hypersomnia.
  3. Polysomnography – This test is also known as the “sleep test”. Polysomnopgraphy records any changes in a patient’s sleep. Most of the time, the patient will be asked to spend the night in a sleep center for polysomnography to be done.

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