New Drug Offers Hope for Insomnia Patients

Suvorexant – Experimental Drug for Insomnia

Preliminary reports on Merck’s experimental sleep drug Suvorexant indicate it helps insomniacs fall asleep faster and stay asleep longer. Suvorexant works differently from other sleeping pills. Current sleep medications work on brain receptors that increase sleepiness.

Suvorexant inhibits Orexin, a hormone that acts on the brain to increase wakefulness. Brain levels of Orexin are naturally lower during the night. An additional interesting use for Suvorexant is that it might be particularly helpful for shift workers, who need to sleep during the day when Orexin levels are high.  Merck is hoping to receive FDA approval for Suvorexant in the Summer of 2013.

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CPAP Reduces Daytime Sleepiness

Treatment is Effective Even In Patients with Mild OSA

Continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) has long been the gold standard of treatment for severe obstructive sleep apnea (OSA). Newer data shows that CPAP is also effective in patients with mild to moderate OSA and daytime sleepiness.

A study recently published in the American Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine shows that CPAP treatment effectively reduces symptoms and improves quality of life in patients with mild to moderate OSA which represents the largest segment of the OSA population.

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Tips For A Better Night’s Sleep #5

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The Symptoms of Restless Leg – Restless Limb Syndrome

In today's video segment, I'd like to talk about a disorder known as restless limb syndrome, more commonly known as restless leg syndrome. This is a disorder that is manifest by an irresistible urge to move, and it can be any part of your body, not just the legs. Most commonly, however, it involves the movement of your feet or ankles. This can be as subtle as the wiggling of your toes, flip flopping or tapping of your feet, or just this general urge to move any part of your body.

This is a disorder that occurs primarily when you are at rest such as sitting in a chair, in your car, at your desk, on a plane or a train, or most commonly while you are lying in bed prior to falling asleep. This disorder occurs most often in the early evening hours compared to the daytime hours. It is often but not always associated with some kind of an unpleasant sensation in the extremity. This can range from anything from pain or discomfort, to numbness, tingling, burning, creepy crawly sensation like bugs on the skin, or just this irresistible urge to move or a sensation of restlessness.

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Dr. Popper Interviewed by CBS2 News

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The Real-Life ‘Limitless’? Narcolepsy Drug
Used To Provide Extra Energy Boost

Although the FDA approved indications for Provigil and Nuvigil is to treat excessive daytime sleepiness (EDS) that occurs in narcolepsy, adequately treated obstructive sleep apnea with residual daytime sleepiness or the EDS associated with shift work, thousands of patients take the pill both legally and illegally because they’re simply tired and want more energy.

Dr. Popper was recently interviewed by Lisa Sigell of CBS2 news on the growing trend of “off label” use of these medications. Dr. Popper cautions patients to first have a thorough medical evaluation to rule out an underlying medical condition that may be causing the symptoms of fatigue, lethargy, lack of energy or cognitive impairment prior to resorting to treating a symptom with a medication that may not be the “magic pill” some believe it to be.

STUDIO CITY (CBS2) — A narcolepsy drug, dubbed the “Viagra of the brain”, is being used by some people to increase their brain function.

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Drowsy Driving Prevention Week is November 12-18th

National Sleep Foundation's Drowsy Driving Prevention Week® Provides Tips to Prevent One in Six Traffic Fatalities

Drowsy Driver

WASHINGTON, DC, November 9, 2012 – In recognition of Drowsy Driving Prevention Week®, (November 12-18), the National Sleep Foundation (NSF) is joining with the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety to educate drivers about sleep safety. A recent survey conducted by the AAA Foundation found that young people are more likely to drive drowsy.  Specifically, one in seven licensed drivers ages 16-24 admitted to having nodded off at least once while driving in the past year as compared to one in ten of all licensed drivers who confessed to dozing off during the same period.

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News From Around the World

Obesity, Apnea & Pregnancy
Can Mean Increased Risk for Mother and Child

A new study published online in the journal Obstetrics & Gynecology reports that newborns of obese pregnant women with obstructive sleep apnea are more likely to be admitted to the neonatal intensive care unit compared with obese mothers without sleep apnea. The study also found higher rates or pre-eclampsia, hypertension and the need for cesarean delivery in overweight pregnant women.

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What Keeps You Up at Night?

Ask us about it.

Every Friday is your day to ask a question about sleep. Answers to your questions will be posted starting Monday the following week.

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Obesity in America – Part 8

Healthy Snacks to Keep You Going Throughout the Day

In my previous articles, I gave examples of healthy, low calorie, high MUFA meals for breakfast, lunch and dinner. In today's installment I will give you sample recipes for in between meals snacks. All of these snacks have fewer than 400 calories, are high in protein and MUFAs, and are healthy and delicious. Enjoy them!

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Obesity in America – Part 7

Healthy Dinners to End the Day Right

In my previous article, I gave you examples of some healthy, low calorie, high MUFA meals for lunch. In today's installment I will give you some sample recipes for dinner. All of these recipes are between 375 – 425 calories, are high in protein and MUFAs, healthy and delicious. Enjoy them and eat healthier at the same time!

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Obesty in America – Part 6

Healthy Lunches to Help Get You Through the Day

In my previous article, I gave you examples of some healthy, low calorie, high MUFA meals to start the day. In today,s installment I would like to offer you some recipes for lunch to keep you going during the daytime. As before, all of these recipes are between 375 – 425 calories, are high in protein and MUFAs, healthy and delicious. I hope you enjoy them as much as I do!

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