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The Curbsiders Internal Medicine Podcast

Supercharge your learning as these board-certified Internists interview the experts to bring you clinical pearls, practice changing knowledge, and a healthy dose of humor. 

Nov 5, 2018

The sleep apnea episode that won’t put you to sleep. Become a sleep apnea guru with incredible insights from Barbara Phillips MD, MSPH, FCCP an expert in pulmonary medicine, critical care and sleep medicine who is also a past president of CHEST! We discuss high-yield topics in the world of obstructive sleep apnea including: home sleep studies vs in-lab polysomnography, the importance of oxygen saturation (the T90 and ODI) when interpreting sleep study results, tricks to improve CPAP adherence, and alternatives therapies for obstructive sleep apnea. ACP members can visit to claim free CME-MOC credit for this episode and show notes.

Full show notes available at Rate us on iTunes, recommend a guest or topic and give feedback at


Written and produced by: Cyrus Askin MD

CME questions by: Cyrus Askin MD

Editor: Chris Chiu MD & Matthew Watto MD

Hosts: Cyrus Askin MD & Matthew Watto MD

Guest: Barbara Phillips, MD

Cover-Art & Infographic - Beth Garbitelli, MS1

Time Stamps

  • 00:00 Disclaimer, intro, guest bio
  • 03:00 Guest one liner, book recommendation, advice for trainees
  • 08:10 Clinical case of sleep apnea, some basic stats, and key predictors of sleep apnea
  • 12:38 Barriers to diagnosis and treatment of OSA
  • 15:23 Discussion of T90, hypoxemia and sleep fragmentation
  • 17:05 How to read a sleep study report
  • 21:55 Home sleep apnea testing
  • 24:15 What are the consequences of sleep apnea
  • 28:30 What is the efficacy of cpap for lowering blood pressure and mortality
  • 31:45 Counseling a patient who is new to cpap
  • 33:45 Choice of mask
  • 40:10 Do alternatives to cpap work? e.g. surgery, mandibular advancement devices
  • 44:17 Modafinil and z-drugs
  • 47:15 Driver’s license issues in sleep apnea
  • 48:35 Future of sleep medicine and take home points
  • 51:15 Outro