Polysomnography is the all-night recording of multiple brain and body activities including brain waves (EEG), eye movements, muscle tone, limb movements, heart rate and rhythm(electrocardiogram), and many aspects of breathing including chest and abdominal respiratory movements, airflow at the nose and mouth, and oxygen and carbon dioxide levels. This study is important to help diagnose a number of different sleep disorders such as sleep apnea, narcolepsy, and sleep terrors.
Patients undergoing polysomnography are typically referred to the sleep laboratory at Boston Children's Hospital where they spend the night in a comfortable bed. EEG electrodes are attached. Other monitors are also placed so as to measure several aspects of breathing, blood oxygen content, eye movement and muscle activity.
To view an example of a sleep study, click here.