Information for Doctors

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Thoracic Medicine

Think you might have a breathing disorder or just looking for more information?

Sleep Medicine

Latest News

Often times when we can’t sleep or we feel tired throughout the day, there are common “quick fixes” which we use to help us fall asleep easier and give us an extra boost in the morning. However, some of these habits can often be detrimental to your sleep health, affecting you not just at night, but throughout the day as well.

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New research has found that the less we sleep in midlife, the faster our brains can decline and lead to cognitive impairment in old age.

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“What is happening in YOUR sleep?!? How can you really know? Ever thought of using a sleep app? There are some misunderstandings to what data is relevant when using sleep apps so understanding the limitations are IMPORTANT. "It is always recommended to follow up with a sleep study to be sure nothing is missed. “

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A diagnosis of obstructive sleep apnoea (OSA) may raise the risk of osteoporosis, particularly among women or older individuals, according to a new study. OSA is a condition that causes brief interruptions in breathing during sleep. If left untreated, OSA can raise the risk for stroke, cardiovascular disease and heart attacks.  New research shows that OSA may also increase the risk of osteoporosis.

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Insomnia predisposes individuals to increased risk of stroke and this association is profound among young adults – up to eight times greater among insomniacs 18 to 34 years old.  The results of a recent study underscore the clinical importance of identifying and treating insomnia.

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Heavy drinking damages the body in many ways. In addition to liver failure, alcoholics are at a much greater risk of developing pneumonia and life threatening acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS), for which there is no treatment. Researchers suspect that alcoholics are more susceptible to these lung diseases because the immune system in the lung is no longer strong enough to protect from infection and damage, but, it had been unclear why the immune system in the lung fails.

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Do I Have A Breathing Disorder?

The Lung Health Checklist*

This questionnaire comes from the Australian Lung Foundation and will help you to determine whether your lung health could be at risk.

If you answer yes to any of the questions below you should seriously consider talking to your doctor:

Do you:

Have a new, persistent or changed cough? Yes/No
Cough up mucus, phlegm or blood? Yes/No
Experience chest tightness or wheeze? Yes/No
Get out of breath more easily than others your age? Yes/No
Have frequent chest infections? Yes/No
Experience chest pain, fatigue or sudden weight loss? Yes/No

 

Answering Yes to any of the above could be a sign your lung health could be at risk...particularly if you:

Are a smoker or ex-smoker, or you have worked in a job that exposed you to dust, gas or fumes.

If you believe you are at risk of a respiratory disorder, take the responses from this questionnaire to your doctor as it will assist you in starting the conversation with them. They may refer you to our lung function lab for further testing or to one of our specialists for a consultation..

*This Lung Health Checklist has been designed by The Australian Lung Foundation to assist the community in monitoring their lung health. It is intended to be used as a guide only and is not an authoritative statement. Please consult your doctor for medical opinion or advice.

Breathlessness Assessment Questionnaire

Think of how you feel today compared to 6-12 months ago. Do you get breathless (or feel more breathless), feel faint or dizzy performing ordinary daily activities such as:

Making the bed Yes No
Having a shower Yes No
Doing the washing and hanging it out Yes No
Walking to the corner store or around the supermarket Yes No
Climbing a flight of stairs Yes No
Walking up a gentle incline Yes No
In bed or while lying down Yes No

In the last 6-12 months, have you avoided any activities because they make you short of breath (or have you changed the way you do an activity because it makes you short of breath)? Yes No
In the last 6-12 months, have any of your friends or family commented that you seem out of breath or do things at a slower place? Yes No

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