Non-linear signal processing for diagnosis of sleep breathing disorders

Twenty million Americans suffer from sleepbreathing disorders, putting them at risk for anumber of cardiac and neurological diseases.Approximately half of those sleep breathingdisorder cases go undiagnosed and untreatedbecause of lack of access to diagnosticservices. To remedy this potentiallydangerous situation, the Naval UnderseaWarfare Center (NUWC) Division, Newportdeveloped and patented a unique method todiagnose sleep breathingdisorders in a short, easy-to-perform test.The method uses chaostheory, a unique way ofmathematically predictingbehavior based onsensitivity to smallchanges, and applies it tosignals normally collectedduring a sleep test.However, instead of anexpensive night-long testwhere the subject is asleep,the new test is performed infive minutes while thesubject is awake and sittingup. In addition, the newtest costs significantly lessthan a traditional overnightsleep clinic test.This invention has been licensed to VanguardTechnologies, LLC, of North Attleboro,Massachusetts, a woman-owned startupcompany formed to commercialize thetechnology. Under a CRADA between NUWCand Vanguard Technologies, NUWC has supported data analysis of clinical trials andassisted with the commercial development ofthe Non-Linear Signal Processing for Diagnosisof Sleep Breathing Disorders. VanguardTechnologies expects its product, whichscreens for sleep apnea and monitors sleepapnea treatment, to be available in doctors’offices within a year.The benefits of being able to cost-effectivelyscreen the population for obstructed sleepapnea (OSA) will savemany lives and preventmany debilitatingaccidents. A recent reportstates that the annualdirect costs for OSA areestimated to beapproximately $16 billion.Untreated OSA patientshave hospital stays 2.8times as long as treatedsubjects, and incur excesshospital costs of $100,000to $200,000 plus doubledphysician costs. Beyondthe apparent cost savings,the Non-Linear SignalProcessing for Diagnosisof Sleep BreathingDisorders will positivelyaffect the quality of life formillions of people who will be able to sharemore productive lives with their families andloved ones.
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