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Complete 3D full body scanning is now available at the Sleeping Disorders Centre. Scanning someone is simple. Patients simply stand on the turntable and hold still for 30 seconds, while the platform spins. With its razor sharp high resolution infrared images, Styku technology captures millions of data points in a matter of seconds in a fast, non-invasive process.



The Styku app gives professionals the ability to perform a full body scan, view 3D models, extract measurements, track changes in body shape, calculate fitness and health metrics, and much more. This technology is used at health clubs by fitness professionals and nutritionists, and now Snore Centre founder Michael Oko has identified the benefits the device can provide in a medical context. Improving fitness and weight loss is a key part of treating sleep apnoea, and the 3D body scanner allows this be assessed and monitored in a new and comprehensive way.


Watch a video of the scanner in action…


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An award-winning NHS service to help patients with diagnosis and management of obstructive sleep apnoea (OSA) is opening at Hampton Hill Medical Centre (TW12 1NY) on 12  September.

OSA is caused by an obstruction blocking the airway of the throat so that the air cannot reach the lungs, leaving the sufferer gasping for breath. Men are three times more likely to have the condition, which affects around 1.5 million adults in the UK. If left untreated, OSA can cause heart disease, hypertension, stroke and exacerbate diabetes.

Symptoms of OSA may include:

  • breath holding/struggling to breath at night (apnoea)
  • very loud snoring
  • daytime fatigue and drowsiness
  • short-term memory loss
  • multiple trips to urinate through the night
  • early morning headaches
  • loss of interest in sex

Richmond Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) has commissioned a community based OSA service, which is available to people who have been referred by their GP. It is one of the first of its kind in the country and allows patients to be assessed and monitored in the comfort of their own home.

The service has been developed in partnership with consultant ear, nose and throat surgeons and Department of Health OSA advisors, Professor Ram Dhillon and Mr Michael Oko.

Dr Graham Lewis, local GP and chair of Richmond CCG, said: “For some people who snore, the cause will be OSA. It is a common, treatable condition, but many people don’t know they have it and require diagnosis. It is important to make an appointment to see your GP if you have any symptoms.”

The service allows many of the patients with suspected OSA or those with established OSA to be diagnosed and monitored in their own bed, without having to spend a night away from home.

Dr Lewis continues: “The good news is that we can help 80% of patients manage the condition at home, without the need for surgery. This could be anything from lifestyle changes to state-of-the-art technology which enables us to track the progress of a patient at the touch of a button.

“We are very pleased to be offering this innovative service for people living in the borough of Richmond who have suspected obstructive sleep apnoea.”


This World Sleep Day, 86% of Brits won’t be fully rested and our habits are to blame
March 13th marks World Sleep Day – a day designed to celebrate all things sleep-related. A recent survey into the nation’s pre-sleep habits shows that a massive proportion of Brits are not doing enough to get quality sleep.
Poor sleep routines, where two thirds of all pre-sleep activity is centred on electronic devices, lead nearly one in ten to say they find it ‘virtually impossible’ to get up in the mornings. A further three quarters to confess to feeling less than fresh the next day.
A staggering nine out of ten of us watch TV, half use a computer and over a third use a smartphone. It is likely that the same people are using multiple electronic devices in the run up to bedtime, giving their brains sparse opportunity to wind down.
The research carried out by luxury bath mat makers Turtle Mat found that although most of us think it’s important to relax, only one in four undertake activities that allow their brains to start switching off, whether it be by taking a bath or reading a book. Many put this lack of relaxation down to being too busy, with a further six percent of the population going as far as saying they feel guilty for it.
The knock-on effect of these activities is clear: if our brains aren’t being prepared for sleep, we won’t get the rest we need.
Dr Michael Oko, consultant ENT surgeon and founder of the Snoring Disorders Centre, describes the impact using an electronic device prior to bed can have on the brain to affect sleep:
“These devices emit blue light which stimulates the brain and inhibits melatonin metabolism for a few hours. This has the effect of resetting your body clock (circadian rhythm) and sleep cycle. If you do not get enough quality sleep you cannot perform at your best the next day.”
Those glued to electronic devices before bed are running the risk of major long-term health effects, including obesity, diabetes, heart disease and some cancers. As Dr Oko says, “We are yet to see the true long term impact on the younger generation of this recent advancement in technology.”
With the help of Dr Oko, Turtle Mat has created a self-assessment quiz with positive actions to take this World Sleep Day which can be found here. The survey also found:
• The South West of the country gets the best quality of sleep with over 2/3 waking up rested
• Older people drink more alcohol before bed than younger generations, younger people use the most electronic devices before bed
• Leicester is the city that feels the most guilty for relaxing whilst Londoners take the most baths and wake up fresher for it

Rebecca Wilson, Marketing Manager at Turtle Mat, says of their research “The health impact that our pre-sleep habits are having on our minds and bodies is a real cause for concern, but to think that we don’t fully know what the long-term impacts may be is shocking. We set out to explore if people were taking enough time to relax and the reasons they don’t, but once we got started a much more worrying trend started to emerge.”
So what can be done to improve quality of sleep? Dr Oko describes what is known as “Sleep Hygiene” and offers some pointers: “It is essentially “powering down” your mind so it can go into “Sleep Mode”. In today’s 24/7 society you have to plan to sleep well so you can be as efficient as possible. Turn off your devices 2-3hrs before you intend to sleep, your bedroom is only for two things; Sleep & Sex!”

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An Ear, Nose and Throat Consultant and Clinical Lead for Obstructive Sleep Apnoea at United Lincolnshire Hospitals Trust are leading a great innovation in relation to copper and infection control in a hospital setting.

From the first week in September, copper based beds, chairs, door handles and other surfaces will be introduced in the sleep clinic at the Bostonian, Pilgrim Hospital, Boston.

Mr Michael Oko has been researching into whether copper surfaces kill bacteria such as norovirus and MRSA. The research in the USA in intensive care units has proven that using copper surfaces can reduce infection by 58%. If you develop a hospital acquired infection you spend an extra 19 days in hospital, have a 6 fold chance of dying and a 250% chance of being readmitted within 30 days and it costs an extra equivalent of $ 43,000!

Along with reduced chance of infection, the copper surfaces come with other benefits including a one-off cost which can see the investment returned within two months. The sleep clinic patients are often compromised with multiple medical conditions (diabetes, obesity, hypertension etc.) where susceptibility of infection could be high.

Mr Oko said, “This is an example of the more creative solutions which can be used to prevent patients from needing to rely on antibiotics to cure infection. This comes as Prime Minister David Cameron and the Chief Medical Officer have announced that more needs to be done to combat the antibiotic resistance.

The copper units have been funded through the sleep clinic’s charitable funds which will then be matched by Mr Oko himself. The unit is looking for sponsors or donations to help to expand the copper surfaces further into the hospital.
This could be done through sponsoring a specific piece of equipment or by simply making a donation to the unit.

Sleeping Disorders Centre founder, Consultant ENT surgeon Michael Oko, will address senior international healthcare executives, public servants, and academics at the 1st International Road Traffic Accident Conference at the Rose Wood Hotel, Abu Dhabi, on 11th March 2014.

Mr Oko, a UK government advisor on Obstructive Sleep Apnoea (OSA) strategy, will be speaking about the benefits of preventative treatment in reducing road traffic accidents, using the example of Lincolnshire UK, where traffic fatalities have fallen significantly since sleep apnoea testing and treatment began. Professor Ram Dhillon (Middlesex University and Sleeping Disorders Centre) will also address the conference on “Snoring & Preventable Deaths on the Road: A Common, medically treatable, and often missed cause of Road Traffic Accidents.”

Mr Oko said:

“It is suspected that about 20% of car accidents are sleep related and research has shown that sleepiness can impair driving more than drink! Indeed, patients with OSA have a 7-12 fold chance of a road traffic accident (RTA) compared to those who do not, and results in Lincolnshire have shown that treating the condition can reduce the accident rate dramatically. With the low level of awareness of sleep apnoea in the Middle East it’s no surprise that road accident rates in the Gulf region are high. In fact, road traffic accidents are the second major cause of death in the UAE and there are 3500 fatalities per year from RTAs in Saudi Arabia alone. I believe that the success I have had in Lincolnshire can be replicated in the Middle East by raising awareness of the condition, and forming long-term partnerships with local hospitals, doctors, and government departments.”

Mr Oko has already been very active in bringing this message to the healthcare community in the Middle East. For his work in this area Mr Oko was awarded the Middle East Hospital magazine award for excellence in respiratory care in 2011 and 2013.

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An online survey conducted by the Sleeping Disorders Centre has found that almost three quarters of respondents were at a high risk of suffering from sleep apnoea. Half of the 52 respondents were classified as obese (with a BMI over 35), a key indicator of risk, 69.2% said that they snored loudly, and 92.2% complained of feeling tired during the daytime. 55.8% of all respondents to the survey were men, who traditionally have a higher risk level than women, although recent evidence suggests this gap is closing.

Michael Oko, consultant ENT surgeon, and Sleeping Disorders Centre founder, said:

“Sleep apnoea prevents people from getting a good night’s sleep by preventing air getting to the lungs. This leads to tiredness and irritability, and marital problems, and can also contribute to serious illnesses such as diabetes, hypertension and heart disease. Once people are aware they are suffering from the condition there are various treatments that can help them to overcome it, the most common being wearing a Continuous Positive Airway Pressure (CPAP) mask at night.”

Mr Oko, who recently appeared as an expert on a BBC1 programme about sleeping disorders “Goodnight Britain”, actively campaigns to raise awareness of sleep apnoea and writes a regular blog on the subject. He will be addressing the 10th Middle East Update in Otolaryngology in Dubai on 21st April 2013. He added:

“Almost all the survey respondents felt tired during the day, and must have suspected a sleeping disorder to have visited the site and completed the survey. I hope that more and more people will take this test and get help if they need it, as the survey shows; if you think you may have a sleeping disorder, the chances are that you do.”

Visitors to the Sleeping Disorders Centre website were asked to complete the STOP-BANG questionnaire, a set of eight questions regarded as the most accurate means of indicating a person’s level of risk of suffering from sleep apnoea from a self-conducted survey. Answering yes to three or more of the eight questions (measuring BMI, age, sex, neck size, snoring, fatigue, blood pressure, and observed apnoeas) indicates a high risk and that the person should visit their GP or go to a sleep clinic for an assessment.

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Sleep Apnea Prevention Project (S.A.P.P.) Video Launches Worldwide With Warren Sapp to Help Save Millions of Lives

Bioengineer, Sleep Apnea Expert and Zyppah Inc. Founder Dr. Jonathan Greenburg and Super Bowl XXXVII Champion Warren Sapp have joined together to raise global awareness about the importance of getting tested and treated for snoring and obstructive sleep apnea. The global awareness health initiative, Sleep Apnea Prevention Project (S.A.P.P.), released the first video segment of a documentary of Sapp undergoing sleep apnea testing and treatment.

In January, Sapp was tested and diagnosed with obstructive sleep apnea. Through the video, viewers will gain exclusive access to the real-life experiences of the sports legend as he embarks upon a personal journey to understand the root cause of sleep apnea and the importance of getting tested. Viewers can watch Sapp as he undergoes testing and learns about the treatment options available to cure his sleep apnea.

The purpose of the S.A.P.P. is twofold:

1. GLOBAL AWARENESS: The project delivers an impactful message to the media, medical community and the millions who think of snoring as a nuisance. It illustrates how snoring, a warning sign of a more serious medical issue, is closely linked to Sleep Apnea. It also explains how untreated sleep apnea leads to serious health risks like stroke, heart disease, high blood pressure, Alzheimer’s and cancer.

2. PATIENT EDUCATION: The project provides a clear message explaining the root cause of snoring and sleep apnea. The documentary illustrates medical advances that make it more convenient to get tested and treated. It compares the patient experience and results of the home sleep test to those conducted in sleep labs. It explains the various treatments available (surgery, CPAP and oral appliances) and how these methods work to cure sleep apnea.

It is estimated that over 100 million people worldwide have sleep apnea and 80% are undiagnosed. Delivering the message that early detection and treatment of sleep apnea can extend and save lives is the goal of S.A.P.P. For more information and links to the video, follow Warren Sapp on Twitter @WarrenSapp

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Just want to let you all know that I will be featuring in an upcoming BBC1 program called “Goodnight Britain” on November 29th at 9pm. Should be of interest to sleep apnoea sufferers, and hopefully get the issue some publicity

The program is in two parts. Part 1 is on Wednesday November 28th at 9pm, and part 2 is on Thursday November 29th at 9pm.

“Goodnight Britain tackles the nation’s biggest sleep disorders, meeting and curing some of the UK’s worst sleepers and exposing the extraordinary behaviour that lurks behind Britain’s bedroom curtains.”

“In the first part of a new two-part series presented by Sian Williams, Goodnight Britain’s sleep experts – Dr Kirstie Anderson and Dr Jason Ellis – venture into the bedrooms of five contributors tormented by a range of conditions, from parasomniacs who scream the house down and snorers whose trumpeting rattles the window-panes, to insomniacs who bake six hours a night.

Through the use of high-tech night-vision cameras, the sleep experts observe the secrets of the patients’ sleep problems first hand. But the investigations don’t stop there: the five contributors are also subjected to a night at the Goodnight Britain Sleep House, where every toss, turn and snuffle is monitored using state-of-the-art equipment while they sleep. Only then do the causes of their night-time traumas fully come to light and our experts can begin to devise a treatment plan that just might work.”

From the BBC website:

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The Department of Health has set up a Obstructive Sleep Apnoea  (OSA) Working Group with a brief to produce a report outlining recommendations for the Department of Health’s (DH) Respiratory Programme Board on a clinically effective strategy to improve outcomes for adults with obstructive sleep apnoea (OSA) from April 2013.

Consultant ENT surgeon, and founder of the Sleeping Disorders Centre, Michael Oko, welcomed the formation of the working group:

“I am looking forward to contributing to the work of DH in this important area. Awareness of sleep apnoea and its associated risks has been historically low, with many sufferers undiagnosed. However, evidence shows that the condition is widespread with around 4% of the population affected, and there is a growing body of evidence linking the condition to an increased risk of stroke, heart failure, diabetes, and other serious illnesses. The rising tide of obesity and cardiovascular disease, coupled with the increasing public awareness of sleep apnoea, will mean that diagnosis of sleep apnoea is set to keep rising and we will need to have a strategy in place to cope with this growth in demand for sleep apnoea services in the UK”.

The terms of reference of the working group, which met for the first time on 19 July, include identifying the quality and economic costs to the NHS of the burden of OSA; reviewing current initiatives and incentives to improve the quality of care for people with OSA; prioritising interventions that will have the most impact on improving quality, outcomes and procurement of equipment; highlighting the impact of OSA on patients with co-morbidities including those with hypertension, obesity, stroke, cardiovascular disease, heart failure and diabetes; and to align development of the strategy with the objectives of the Outcomes Strategy for COPD and Asthma and existing work undertaken by the BLF, BTS, ARTP Sleep and British Sleep Society.

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Philips joined with the World Association of Sleep Medicine (WASM) as an official sponsor of World Sleep Day 2012, held on Friday, March 16. This year’s theme– ‘Breathe Easily, Sleep Well’ – centered on raising awareness of sleep disorders that affect a person’s breathing, such as obstructive sleep apnea (OSA).

“Philips is pleased to partner with the World Association of Sleep Medicine for World Sleep Day 2012 to build awareness and understanding around disorders that affect the quality of sleep, including obstructive sleep apnea,” said Dr. David White, chief medical officer for Philips Home Healthcare Solutions and a professor of sleep medicine at Harvard Medical School. “Philips offers a wide range of sleep-related products and solutions, from diagnostic tools through to patient-centered sleep therapy devices, to enhance the quality of sleep and improve the health and well-being of our customers and patients around the world.”

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