Why would my doctor order a Polysomnogram (PSG)?

The most common reason doctors order a PSG is to determine whether a patient has obstructive sleep apnea. The PSG can provide information about whether a child has apneas (stops breathing), and if so, how often and what happens as a result (whether there are drops in the child's oxygen levels, brief arousals from sleep, etc.). Another reason for a doctor to order a PSG is to look at whether repeated leg movements during sleep are waking your child up. These can be associated with restless leg syndrome.

The information from the sleep study is taken together with the other clinical information, and your doctor will use the information to determine what may be contributing to your child's sleep problems. Please discuss specific reasons for your child's study with your doctor.

Can non-Kennedy Krieger doctors order PSGs at Kennedy Krieger?

Non-Kennedy Krieger doctors are welcome to discuss ordering PSGs at Kennedy Krieger with the sleep disorders team. PSGs are medical tests and require medical providers to order them.

Non-Kennedy Krieger providers need to call the lab at (443) 923-9150 to get a password to download a requisition form. We will not be able to schedule an PSG until we have received the requisition. We will review all requisitions and may require a child to be evaluated in the Sleep Disorders Clinic before scheduling a sleep study.

For patients who have never been seen at Kennedy Krieger before, the parents will have to call our Intake Department at (443) 923-9400 in order for their child to be entered into our system.

What types of sleep studies do we perform?

Our lab performs several types of sleep studies, including:

  • Routine Overnight Sleep Study or PSG (from about 7:00 p.m. until 6:00 a.m.)
  • PSG Plus Extended Seizure Montage (same amount of time, but with more extensive brain activity monitoring)
  • PSG Plus Multiple Sleep Latency Test (MSLT) (from about 7:00 p.m. until the following afternoon, a special test to look at daytime sleepiness)

The kind of sleep study selected will be based on the information we hope to get out of the study.

How do I get results?

PSG results are typically available to the referring doctor approximately one to two weeks after the test is performed. Please contact the doctor who referred you about one week after the test. If you have an appointment with your Kennedy Krieger doctor sooner than one week after the test, please let the lab staff know as soon as possible so the results will be ready early.

The technologist is not permitted to tell you what he/she sees during or immediately after the test. Do not call the lab for your test results -- it is up to the doctor who referred you to communicate the results (and their meaning for the care of your child) to you.

How do I get a copy of my PSG?

If you want a copy of the PSG report, please call the Kennedy Krieger Institute medical records department at (443) 923-1825.