Frequently Asked Questions
Where are the Penn Sleep Lab and Clinical Office Locations?
The Penn Sleep Centers offer new and follow-up office visits, telemedicine visits, attended sleep lab sleep testing, and home sleep apnea testing at many Penn Sleep Center locations. The Penn Sleep Centers also offer several Special Sleep Programs and Clinics at some of the locations such as the CPAP Program and Clinics, the CPAP Alternative Clinic, the Sleep Ventilation Program, the Insomnia Treatment Program, the Behavioral Sleep Medicine Program, the Sleep Mental Health Clinic and Treatment Research Program, and other collaborations such as with Penn Dental Medicine Orthodontics for apnea oral appliances.
To schedule an office or telemedicine appointment with a sleep medicine specialist please visit the Penn Medicine- Sleep Medicine website or call 215-662-7772 or 800-789-PENN (7366). Some appointments also may be made using mypennmedicine.
Where can I obtain information about having PECO, disability, or other medical forms signed by my physician or nurse practitioner?
Please click on this link for Information about PECO, disability, or other medical forms.
Where can I find out more information about what to expect before and after a sleep test?
Please click on this link for Sleep Testing Information at Penn. All of the Penn Sleep Centers and Testing Labs are accredited by the American Academy of Sleep Medicine (AASM). Additional general lab and home sleep testing information is available through the AASM patient education resources.
Are my CPAP/ BiPAP/ Ventilator device or breathing machine, mask, or cleaning unit affected by recalls or safety warnings, and what should I do?
Many of the Philips units are affected by the Philips device recall. They are listed online by Philips, or your DME (equipment company) can confirm if your unit is affected by the recall. If so, you should immediately register your unit on the Philips online recall list to start the process of replacing your unit. Your DME can help you do the registration if you are not sure how to complete the online Philips form.
The use of any ozone or UV light cleaning devices is not recommended by the FDA.
Safety warnings have been posted about the use of masks that have magnet clips.
Additional information and updates may be found in the Patient Care Tab_PAP Device, Mask, and Cleaning Recall and Safety Information
and on the FDA recall website, the Philips recall website, the March 2022 Philips Bulletin update, the June 2022 Philips update, the American Academy of Sleep Medicine recall link, for and other related links.
We at Penn Medicine do not have information yet on the timing or details of repair or replacement of devices. This is a worldwide recall of the listed Philips PAP devices, and there currently is a general shortage of all brands of new and replacement PAP type devices. We are here to support you as much as possible and will be working with your Durable Medical Equipment companies as we learn more. Please understand that this is a fluid situation and our recommendations may or may not change as more data is shared by the manufacturer, medical professional societies, and government regulatory agencies. This statement will be updated accordingly.
If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact your doctor's office for medical questions and your equipment company for equipment questions. You may also send us non-urgent questions through MyPennMedicine.
Are there opportunities to volunteer for Sleep Research studies?
What is CBT-I (Cognitive Behavioral Therapy) treatment for Insomnia?
Insomnia means difficulty falling asleep or staying asleep that is associated with daytime symptoms like fatigue, drowsiness, difficulty concentrating, irritability and others.
Cognitive Behavior Therapy for Insomnia (CBT-I) is preferred by sleep experts as treatment for most cases of insomnia.
- It is as effective as medication in the short-term and more effective than medication in the long-term. CBT-I includes a number of things that you can do yourself to improve your sleep. Even though it may seem that problems sleeping are unpredictable and uncontrollable, once you start to thoroughly examine the problem with one of our providers, you may find that some solutions are fairly straightforward.
- A 60-minute evaluation will be followed by 6-8 weekly appointments lasting 20-40 minutes. CBT-I appointments are dedicated to treating insomnia only. Other issues like CPAP problems or Restless Legs Syndrome will be addressed by a different sleep provider.
- Before and during treatment, you’ll be asked to monitor things like when you go to bed, how long it takes to fall asleep, how many times you wake up, etc. This will provide useful information as to what can be changed to improve sleep and to monitor progress. You may be asked to temporarily stay up later or spend less time in bed. It may also be recommended that you get out of bed for a while when you can’t sleep and to avoid waking activities (like watching TV or reading) in bed. We’ll discuss lifestyle-related factors than can influence sleep as well as negative ways of thinking about sleep that can interfere with sleep. This is not an exhaustive list of things that may need to change to improve your sleep, but this should give you an idea of the more commonly recommended interventions.
Appointments: To schedule an appointment with a sleep medicine specialist please visit the Penn Medicine- Sleep Medicine website or call 215-662-7772 or 800-789-PENN (7366). Some appointments also may be made using mypennmedicine.
What is Obstructive Sleep Apnea?
Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA) happens when there are breathing pauses caused by repeated obstructions or closures of areas in your upper airway throat area. These apnea episodes can be associated with drops in oxygen, changes in heart rate and blood pressure, disturbed sleep, and other physiological changes. OSA can result in daytime sleepiness, cardiovascular, and other medical or cognitive/mood problems. CPAP is the main treatment for sleep apnea but there are other options.
What areas in the head and neck may cause or contribute to Obstructive Sleep Apnea?
This short youtube video link shows possible sites of airway collapse that may cause Obstructive Sleep Apnea.
Where can I find out more information about what to expect when CPAP is ordered for me?
Are there insurance rules for ongoing CPAP coverage?
Most insurance companies, such as Medicare, require that patients starting CPAP, Bilevel or ASV therapy:
(1) Have a follow-up appointment with your Sleep doctor or nurse practitioner between 30 and 90 days of starting PAP therapy;
(2) Show (usually with modem or card data) that you have used your PAP therapy 70% of nights, for at least four hours per night, within a consecutive 30 day period within the first 90 days.
Make sure that you use your CPAP and also have a 30-90 day appointment with your sleep doctor or nurse practitioner.
Coverage for PAP units can be denied if these requirements are not met, and you can be responsible for the cost of your PAP unit and supplies.
Billing questions and questions about the equipment should be directed to your DME (Durable Medical Equipment) company. Ask them about your insurance coverage rules as insurance rules may vary with different insurances.
Clinical questions should be directed to your sleep doctor and/or nurse practitioner by calling 215-662-7772 or by sending a mypennmedicine message. If you are having clinical problems using your PAP, do not hesitate to contact your clinician. If you are SLEEPY, then DO NOT DRIVE.
What is Inspire?
Inspire is an FDA-approved implantable medical device for OBSTRUCTIVE Sleep Apnea that stimulates your tongue to move forward which opens your airway while you sleep. The device is implanted via two small incisions (one on the neck, one under your collar bone). Eligibility for Inspire is determined by an ENT (ear, nose, throat) physician, including Dr. Dedhia, Dr. Thaler, and other surgical specialists at Penn Medicine. Additional details can be found on the Penn Sleep Surgery website and at https://www.inspiresleep.com/.
What is Central Sleep Apnea?
Central sleep apnea is a disorder in which your breathing may stop and start while sleeping. Central apnea occurs when your brain does not send proper signals to your chest and breathing muscles. The possible causes of Central Sleep Apnea are different from Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA is caused by repeated obstruction and collapsing in the upper airway and throat areas that cause breathing problems). Central apnea can bee seen with heart failure, stroke, and other medical conditions. Central Sleep Apnea is less common than Obstructive Sleep Apnea.
What is Remedē?
The Remedē System is a treatment option for adult patients with moderate to severe CENTRAL sleep apnea (not Obstructive Sleep Apnea). The device is an implantable system which stimulates a nerve in the chest (phrenic nerve) to send signals to the large muscle between the chest and abdomen (the diaphragm) to breathe. https://www.respicardia.com/remede-system/