19 August 2014

AASM News Headlines, Summer 2014 Edition: New insomnia pill; Pledge to "stop the snore;" Relaxis Pad for RLS; CDC shows striking rise in sleep related clinic visits

Here are some links to AASM news posted between June and mid-August 2014. For more news, visit the AASM here.

FDA approves new sleeping pill Belsomra (suvorexant) for insomnia
Suvorexant (Belsomra) tablets were approved by the FDA on August 13, 2014 for the treatment of insomnia. Suvorexant is a receptor antagonist for the neurotransmitter orexin; it functions by altering the brain's chemical signals responsible for regulating the sleep-wake cycle. Studies show that patients taking suvorexant tend to fall asleep faster and spend less time awake after sleep onset when compared to those taking placebo. Next-day drowsiness is the medication's most common side effect. More information

Stop the snore: AASM urges sleep apnea action for those at risk
Obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) is a potentially life-threatening disease that afflicts at least 25 million American adults. Untreated OSA can increase your risk for serious health problems like heart disease, stroke, diabetes and depression. Did you know that snoring is its most common warning sign? If you snore, or you know someone who snores, it's worth checking out, as OSA is fairly simple to treat. Interested in "stopping the snore?" Take the Pledge.

FDA clears the Relaxis Pad for treatment of restless legs syndrome
A new nonpharmaceutical treatment for Restless Legs Syndrome (RLS), a health condition that can significantly disrupt sleep patterns, is now available through Sensory Medical. The Relaxis Pad is a noninvasive device which emits vibratory counterstimulation to relieve pain and tension in the legs at bedtime. As many as 12 million Americans suffer from RLS, which can rob the body of deep, restorative sleep. Many sufferers go undiagnosed as the symptoms of RLS often resemble stress, arthritis, muscle cramps, or are often attributed to the “normal effects” of aging. Its nonpharmaceutical value makes the Relaxis Pad a breakthrough medical device for many. More information

CDC study examines national trends in office visits for sleep problems
The number and percentage of office visits for sleep related problems, and the number and percentage of office visits accompanied by a prescription for a sleep medication, have increased significantly since 1999. Most striking were increases in the number of office visits resulting in the acquisition of prescription sleep aids. Read the abstract here.

The American Academy of Sleep Medicine (AASM) is the only regulatory, professional organization dedicated exclusively to sleep health. It sets standards and promotes excellence in sleep-related healthcare, education and research and is comprised of nearly 12,000 accredited sleep labs and sleep professionals across the US.