Obstructive sleep apnoea (OSA) is a very common condition affecting 2-4% of adults to a significant degree. It characterised by repeated episodes of obstruction of the throat during sleep and is usually associated with loud snoring and excessive daytime sleepiness.

OSA is an independent risk factor for the development of hypertension and insulin resistance, and is associated with heart attack, cardiac arrhythmia, and stroke.

Treatment includes lifestyle changes, Continuous Positive Airway Pressure (CPAP), Mandibular Advancement Splint (MAS), Provent and surgery.

A sleep study may be performed to assess many different issues relating to sleep. This can include but is not limited to:

  • snoring
  • excessive sleepiness during the day
  • witnessed apnoeas (someone reports seeing you “stop breathing” during sleep)
  • difficulty initiating sleep or staying asleep – to look at possible causes, and assess sleep patterns ensuring targeted
  • treatment
  • morning headaches
  • waking unrefreshed
  • abnormal limb movements during sleep (most often kicking of the feet or lower legs)
  • abnormal behaviour during sleep (yelling, flailing limbs, large movement etc.)
  • memory or concentration difficulties during the day
  • due to other health conditions that can be worsened by sleep apnoea (high blood pressure, cardiac disease, heart attack or stroke, type 2 diabetes, fibromyalgia etc.). Obstructive sleep apnoea (OSA) has been shown to be a significant risk factor for all of these conditions. Studies have shown improvements in the severity and management of these conditions in people who treat their sleep apnoea effectively.
  • if you have been diagnosed with congestive heart failure
  • suspected fits at night
  • sleep pattern problems (common in shift work, or regular overseas travel)
  • uncontrollable urge to sleep (can be associated with muscle weakness, vivid dreams and other symptoms)
  • to review effectiveness of sleep disorder treatment
  • unspecific sleep problems

Find out how to arrange to have a sleep study with us.

What’s involved?

An overnight diagnostic sleep investigation is a painless, non-invasive procedure that uses the latest technology in sleep monitoring systems to record numerous physiological signals which include:

  • EEG (brain waves)
  • Breathing patterns (small cannula that fits in the nostrils)
  • Breathing effort (belts around the chest and abdomen)
  • ECG (Heart rate)
  • Snoring
  • Leg movements
  • Blood oxygen levels (using a light sensor attached to your finger).

Diagnostic Sleep Study Options

  • Hospital Based Diagnostic Study
  • Home Based Diagnostic Study (Sleep studies can be conducted at your own home)

CPAP Sleep
StudyContinuous Positive Airway Pressure (CPAP), pronounced see-pap, is the gold standard method in the treatment of obstructive sleep apnea in adults. It involves splinting the upper airway and preventing the collapse of these structures, while also abolishing snoring.

To achieve this, the CPAP unit will deliver a continuous, low pressure to the upper airway via a nasal and/or mouth mask. While using this therapy, no additional oxygen is delivered, the pressure is generated solely from filtered room air.

This study involves a Continuous Positive Airway Pressure (CPAP) flow generator which generates the required pressure to keep the upper airways open during sleep. The air pressure is delivered through the application of a CPAP mask by Sleep Scientists & Nurses. The CPAP study is used to determine the appropriate pressure settings to treat Obstructive Sleep Apnoea (OSA) and snoring.

There is a very large range of masks available at all sites so we can optimise comfort and fit for your study.

CPAP Sleep Study Options

  • Hospital Based CPAP Study
  • Home Based CPAP Study

Mandibular Advancement Splint

Mandibular Advancements Splints (MAS) may be used in the treatment of mild to moderate Obstructive Sleep Apnoea (OSA) and simple snoring.

MAS devices can best be described as two small football mouthguards, one fitting on the upper teeth and one on the lower teeth.

The two sections are joined with the bottom section brought forward a pre-determined amount to improve the function of the upper airway and other structures implicated in OSA and snoring.

Essentially there are two types of MAS devices. Fixed or block splints are attached near the back teeth and do not allow lateral (side-to-side) or vertical movement. The second type consist of a separate upper and lower plate (2 piece units), with a sliding mechanism located near the back teeth, which allows mouth opening and lateral movement.


rovent is a device used in the treatment of sleep apnoea and snoring. Provent consists of a small valve attached externally to each nostril with hypoallergenic adhesive designed for single-night use.

The valve acts as a one-way resistor, allowing air to flow freely when breathing in. When breathing out, the airflow is directed through small air channels, increasing the resistance. This increased resistance when breathing out creates a pressure which helps keep the upper airways open during this phase of breathing.

Provent is a disposable device which is worn during sleep and removed each morning.


Below are some risk factors that may be associated with having untreated sleep apnoea.

Risk factors of untreated sleep apnoea include:

  • High blood pressure (hypertension).
    • You are 2-3 times more at risk of developing high blood pressure.
  • Diabetes
    • You are 2.3 times more at risk of developing diabetes.
  • Stroke
    • 70% of people who have had a stroke also have OSA. Patients with untreated OSA have been shown to have a slower and less complete recovery following a stroke.
  • Heart disease
    • You are 1.3 times greater risk of developing ischaemic heart disease with untreated OSA.
  • Cardiovascular death
    • You are 2.5 times greater risk of cardiovascular death with untreated OSA.
  • Cognitive function
    • Having untreated OSA increases the risk of having a motor vehicle accident by 3 to 7 times.
  • Irregular heartbeat
    • Having untreated OSA can increase the risk of arrhythmias developing post coronary artery bypass surgery.

Are you sleepy or tired? These are some of the symptoms which may indicate you need a sleep study.

  • Snoring
  • Falling asleep at inappropriate times. For instance when watching movies, reading or chatting.
  • Uncontrollable urge to sleep
  • Feeling tired during the day
  • Restless sleep
  • Insomnia
  • Waking with a choking sensation or gasping.
  • Pauses in breathing during sleep. This may be observed by your bed partner or family member.
  • Irregular breathing during sleep. This may be observed by your bed partner.
  • Waking up with a headache.
  • Waking up frequently to go to the toilet.
  • Poor memory or concentration
  • Irritability
  • Sexual dysfunction
  • Waking up with a dry mouth
  • Need for excessive time in bed
  • Hypertension (high blood pressure), particularly if difficult to control
  • Abnormal leg movements during sleep
  • Type 2 diabetes
  • Heart disease, congestive heart failure, abnormal heart rhythm or recent heart attack/stroke

Sleep Physician
Consultation Locations

Assoc. Prof. Simon Bowler

Respiratory and Sleep Medicine
Suite 38, Level 7, Mater Medical Centre, 293 Vulture Street, South Brisbane, QLD, 4101

Dr Wayne Kelly

Respiratory and Sleep Medicine
Brisbane Private Hospital, 259 Wickham Terrace, Brisbane, QLD, 4000

Dr John Binder

Respiratory and Sleep Medicine
53 Fulham Rd Pimlico, QLD, 4812

Dr Stephen Vincent

Respiratory and Sleep Medicine
3-5 Upward St Cairns City, QLD, 4870

Dr Geoff Eather

Respiratory and Sleep Medicine
Suite 20, Level 6, Mater Medical Centre, 293, Vulture Street, South Brisbane, QLD, 4101

Dr Andrew Rosenstengel

Respiratory and Sleep Medicine
Holy Spirit Northside Private Hospital Medical Centre, 627 Rode Road, Chermside, QLD, 4032

Dr Joe Churton

Respiratory and Sleep Medicine
St Vincents Private Hospital, Level 1, 20 Dalley St, Lismore, NSW, 2480

Dr Aalia Thasneem Saleem

Respiratory and Sleep Medicine
Mater Private Specialist Suites, Level 1, 2 Tournament Drive, Brookwater, QLD, 4300