Sleep disorders, such as sleep apnea or narcolepsy, can disrupt your life. Without getting enough sleep, you're prone to having memory problems, difficulty concentrating, increased stress and anxiety, impaired decision-making ability, and more. Even more serious conditions, including depression, heart disease, and diabetes, have been linked to insufficient sleep.
The cost of a sleep study can vary depending on the type of sleep study you need. Below are a few common options for sleep studies and the associated costs.
What is Polysomnography (Sleep Study)?
A polysomnography (sleep study) is a test that helps diagnose breathing problems, heart problems, and other sleep conditions. It can also help determine the cause of daytime sleepiness or fatigue.
During a sleep study, you'll spend the night in a special sleep lab room. The room has the equipment to monitor your body functions during sleep. An electroencephalogram (EEG) records brain waves, an electrocardiogram (ECG) monitors heart function, and an electromyogram (EMG) detects muscle movement. These tests help identify problems such as:
Breathing problems during sleep (sleep apnea)
Narcolepsy (excessive daytime sleepiness)
What is the Cost of a Sleep Study?
The cost of a sleep study depends on the type of test and the facility where it's performed. For example, an overnight stay in a hospital or other medical center may cost more than a noninvasive home-based test. The following factors can affect how much a sleep study costs:
Inpatient vs. outpatient testing: Inpatient tests are often more expensive because they require an overnight hospital or other medical facility stay. Outpatient tests can be performed in your home or another convenient location.
Your location. U.S. sleep centers charge anywhere between $2,000 and $7,000 for Polysomnography (PSG), depending on where you live. For example, if you live in New York City or San Francisco, expect to pay more than if you live in a rural area.
Insurance coverage. If your insurance covers the cost of your PSG exam as it would any other medical procedure, then there will be no out-of-pocket expenses for you at all. However, if your insurance does not cover sleep studies (or only covers them partially), this might increase the total cost of the test itself and/or cause you to have to pay for it out-of-pocket until your insurer processes your claim.
The type of test: Several types of tests can be used to diagnose sleep disorders, including Polysomnography (PSG), electroencephalography (EEG), and multiple sleep latency tests (MSLT).
As with any tool or method, each type has its advantages and disadvantages, but in general, all can be used to measure brain activity during sleep. Undoubtedly, a PSG provides more detailed results than an EEG or MSLT. This is because it is the most comprehensive test available. There is, however, a cost associated with this option that is higher than either of the other options.
Does Insurance Cover Sleep Studies?
There are several factors to consider, depending on your insurance policy. The cost of sleep studies may be covered by certain types of insurance policies, such as Polysomnography (PSG), whereas other policies may not cover any type of sleep study at all. There is a possibility that a full PSG will cost you at least $1,000 if you are paying for the study out of pocket.
Some insurance companies will cover a routine overnight PSG as part of a treatment plan for people with sleep problems. Other insurers will cover certain types of PSGs, such as a diagnostic sleep study (DSS). A DSS is used to determine whether someone has a sleep disorder and how best to treat it.
If your insurance company does not pay for an overnight PSG or DSS for the reason that the procedure does not meet the criteria of the company, you may be able to appeal the decision or file an appeal with the department of insurance in your state in order to get approval. In addition, if you feel it is necessary, you can also go through a medical necessity review company with a history of resolving disputes with insurers regarding medical coverage or going through an independent medical review organization.
Is There a Way to Save Money on Sleep Studies?
Sleep studies are more affordable than most people think. While the average sleep study cost is $3,000, there are many ways to save money. Here are some tips to help you lower your costs:
Ask about payment plans. Some clinics offer flexible payment options, such as financing with no interest or paying in installments.
Ask about discounts and coupons. Some clinics offer discounts when patients pay cash upfront or if they have insurance with high deductibles or copays. You may also qualify for Medicare or Medicaid coverage for sleep tests if you qualify for those programs based on income level and other factors.
Ask about possible work-related benefits from an employer or union membership. If your employer offers coverage for health expenses that include sleep testing, ask your human resources representative how much coverage you have and how much it will cost out of pocket before agreeing to a sleep study at a specific facility.
Is it Worth it to Have a Sleep Study?
The short answer is yes! Sleep studies are worth it. The long answer is also yes, but there are some factors to consider before getting one. There are two types of sleep studies: Polysomnography and actigraphy. Both are useful for diagnosing an insomnia disorder, but they're different. Polysomnography is a complete overnight sleep study involving the following:
The patient sleeps in a hospital room with monitoring equipment attached to their body. They wear an oxygen mask and electrodes on their fingers and chest to monitor heart rate, respiration, muscle movement, and brain waves during sleep. This test can last from 2-4 hours, depending on how long it takes to fall asleep (this takes 20 minutes).
After falling asleep, the patient will be monitored for about 3 hours until they wake up naturally (normally around 5-7 am). Once awake, they will be asked questions about how well they slept that night so we can compare their subjective report with objective data collected during their sleep study visit.
In conclusion, the use of sleep study equipment and its associated costs are recommended by most doctors to receive the proper medical attention. Sleep study equipment such as polysomnography machines (better known as PSG) are used by sleep specialists to diagnose sleep issues.
SleepRx is the place to get all the help you need. You'll have access to an online sleep apnea test. Once you have completed your sleep study, our sleep specialists will analyze your sleep data and recommend treatment options. We offer at-home sleep testing as well as at-home diagnostic equipment.