Sleep On It

If you spend any amount of time watching TV these days, you know that sleep is big business. There are ads for mattresses, pillows, bedding and more—all promising your best sleep ever. But as a physician, I know that poor sleep can be attributed to much more than simply a lumpy mattress or pillow. Insomnia, narcolepsy, restless legs syndrome and obstructive sleep apnea can contribute to disrupted sleep. And poor sleep can have significant heart implications.

Sleep apnea is the most common sleep disorder and if left untreated, can increase your risk for developing (or worsening):

In addition, a recent study concluded that irregular sleep duration and timing may also be risk factors for cardiovascular disease. The study participants with the most irregular sleep duration or timing had a greater than two-fold risk of developing cardiovascular disease compared to participants with the most regular sleep patterns—even after factoring in established cardiovascular disease risk factors and conventional measures of sleep quantity and quality.

At Virginia Heart, we have fully accredited Sleep Centers in our Fairfax and Loudoun offices. The program is staffed by board certified physicians in sleep medicine including Dr. Amit Patel and Dr. Alireza Maghsoudi. They work with patients to assess their risk factors and can order sleep studies to assess a patient’s level of disrupted sleep and its impacts on their heart health.

Our sleep centers are staffed with trained sleep technologists and offer bedrooms that are comfortable and calming so patients can get a restful night's sleep while undergoing sleep studies. Our dedicated sleep nurse practitioner meets with patients to review their study results, determine a treatment plan and order all necessary follow-up appointments.

If you or someone you know suffers from poor sleep, I recommend you make an appointment to see us. An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.