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Sleep Disorders in Neuromuscular Diseases: Adaption in Care Provision During the COVID-19 Pandemic

Published Online: June 28th 2021 touchREVIEWS in Respiratory & Pulmonary Medicine. 2021;6(1):Online ahead of journal publication
Authors: Katherine E Cox-Flaherty, Eric J Gartman
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Abstract:
Overview

Patients with neuromuscular disease frequently have comorbid sleep disorders. Hypoventilation, upper airway issues, central apnoeas and paroxysmal leg movements are all common in this patient population. It is imperative that these patients undergo a formal evaluation. However, the COVID-19 pandemic has presented many challenges that have necessitated adaptations in the provision of their care. Despite the hurdles created by infection control measures to completing evaluations, such as polysomnography and advanced pulmonary function testing, they generally can be accomplished in a safe manner. Care providers should exhibit caution to avoid the temptation to make clinical decisions based on substandard testing or prescribe suboptimal therapies in this population of patients. Finally, the challenges of the pandemic have also affected the availability of in-person clinical follow-up and assessment of treatment efficacy. The utility of telehealth in this manner has proven invaluable and has allowed for reliable high-quality care to be delivered to a potentially vulnerable population of patients.

Keywords

Sleep disorders, neuromuscular disease, COVID-19, pandemic, adaptations.

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