Patient Instructions

If you have any questions about these instructions, your appointment, need to cancel your appointment, or experience a last-minute delay in arriving at the Sleep Center for your appointment, please call 714-771-8950 between 9 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday. At all other times, call 714-347-7946 and ask the hospital operator to connect you to extension 2297.

Please complete and bring the sleep questionnaire with you.

Overnight sleep test

Import guidelines

For accurate testing results, it is very important to follow these instructions:

  • No alcoholic beverages on the day of your test
  • Minimize caffeinated beverages on the day of your test
  • Avoid taking naps on the day of your test
  • Because sensitive sensors will be applied to the skin on your scalp, face, chest and legs, it is important that you shower and thoroughly wash your hair prior to coming in for your test. Do not apply hairspray or other products, like hair oils or mousse, after your shower.
  • Cancel and rescheduling

    If you need to cancel or reschedule your appointment, please call at least 24 hours in advance. A technologist has been scheduled for the sole purpose of conducting your test. We reserve the right to charge for missed appointments. If you sleep test is scheduled for the weekend, please call the sleep center by 4:30 p.m. Friday afternoon.


    Some insurance companies require pre-authorization for this procedure. If this is the case, our office will await pre-authorization before scheduling your study. It is to your benefit to be familiar with your insurance requirements and to be sure they are being met prior to scheduling an appointment. If you have questions regarding insurance requirements or coverage, please call your insurance carrier.

    This procedure is called a Polysomnography Test (overnight sleep study), which is an Outpatient procedure (less than 24 hours). This information is pertinent when speaking with your insurance carrier. If you have questions, please contact the Sleep Disorders Center, 714-771-8950, for assistance.


    Please bring pajamas, sweats, shorts or any loose-fitting clothing to sleep in (no nightgowns please), and a robe and slippers. Also, bring any toiletry items such as toothbrush, toothpaste, hairbrush, razor, shampoo, etc. If you have a favorite pillow or blanket, bring them also. We want you to be as comfortable as possible. A shower is available for use in the morning if you wish.


    If you are taking any medications, please be sure you have discussed them with your doctor since some medications (especially sleeping pills, stimulants, antihistamines and drugs for anxiety or depression) can interfere with test results and might need to be discontinued prior to your test. However, you should take all of your usual medications on the day and night of the sleep test unless your physician advises you otherwise. Please remember to bring along a list of all medications you are taking.

    Ride home

    You will be able to drive yourself home. Parking is available in the St. Joseph Hospital parking structure. There are designated parking spots for patients having an overnight sleep study. Parking instructions will be provided when you schedule your sleep study. The test is usually completed by 7 a.m.

    Reporting results

    Test results will be available to your doctor within 7-10 working days from the date your study is performed.

    Multiple Sleep Latency Test (MSLT)

    This test is a daytime nap test which is performed on the day following your all-night sleep test.

    The test consists of five scheduled "nap" recordings during which you will be allowed to sleep for a brief period. The first nap starts two hours after you wake up in the morning. The testing is usually completed by 7 p.m. In between naps you will be free to move about, although you will be asked to stay awake. A television and some magazines are available, and you may also bring along things to do such as letter writing, needlework, homework, videos to watch, a radio or cassette tapes for listening, or books and magazines to read.


    You will change into your own daytime clothing in the morning. Something comfortable, such as a soft jogging suit or t-shirt and sweat pants, is recommended. If you wish to shower in the morning, please bring any toiletry items you will need.


    Except for breakfast snacks, meals are not provided during the day. A refrigerator is available if you want to bring food along with you. You are welcome to eat in the hospital cafeteria, although you will have recording wires attached to you scalp and face.


    Some medications you are taking may have been discontinued for your all-night sleep test and MSLT. Please make sure you have discussed all of your medication needs with your doctor. You should bring along with you all other medications you will need to take during the day.