Traditional techniques to assess respiratory disturbances during sleep allow the accurate diagnosis of moderate and severe cases of obstructive sleep apnea but have serious limitations in mild obstructive sleep apnea and cases with signs of obstructive breathing during sleep without apneas and hypopneas. This article describes advantages and limitations of available techniques to measure obstructive breathing during sleep by measuring flow limitation, respiratory effort, and snoring. Standardization of these techniques is crucial for moving the field further and understanding the pathophysiologic role of obstructive breathing itself, and not solely focusing on the associated outcomes of arousals and oxygen desaturations.
- Sleep Apnea, Obstructive
- Respiratory Function Tests