Sleep Apnea Specialists

Sleep apnea is a potentially serious and inconvenient problem that affects millions of Americans. Not only does this disorder disrupt the patient’s sleep, but it can also lead to dangerous complications. Clifford Chew, MD, and Dexter Louie, MD, of Pacific ENT can diagnose sleep apnea and offer effective treatment options. To schedule an appointment for sleep apnea diagnosis and treatment in Chinatown, San Francisco, please call Pacific ENT today.

Sleep Apnea Q & A

What is sleep apnea?

Sleep apnea is a condition that occurs when your breathing starts and stops repeatedly while you’re asleep. There are three main types of sleep apnea:

  • Obstructive sleep apnea
  • Central sleep apnea
  • Complex sleep apnea syndrome.

These conditions cause similar symptoms.

What causes sleep apnea?

Obstructive sleep apnea occurs when the muscles relax and obstruct the flow of air. Central sleep apnea occurs when the brain doesn’t send the right signals to the muscles that control breathing during sleep. Complex sleep apnea syndrome is a combination of obstructive sleep apnea and central sleep apnea.

What are the symptoms of sleep apnea?

The symptoms of sleep apnea can vary, but may include:

  • Irritability
  • Attention problems
  • Excessive sleepiness during the day
  • Difficulty staying asleep
  • A headache in the morning
  • Waking up with a sore throat
  • Waking up in the middle of the night because of shortness of breath
  • Loud snoring

Is sleep apnea dangerous?

If sleep apnea is left untreated, it can lead to dangerous complications, including extreme tiredness during the day, type 2 diabetes, liver problems, and other problems. Sleep apnea can also disrupt your partner’s sleep if you snore loudly or wake repeatedly during the night.

How does Pacific ENT diagnose sleep apnea?

The doctors at Pacific ENT usually diagnose sleep apnea based on the results of a sleep study. During the sleep study, the staff at Pacific ENT will monitor your breathing, oxygen levels, eye movements, and brain waves while you sleep. Based on the results of this study, the doctors will be able to determine whether you have sleep apnea.

What treatments are available?

If you have sleep apnea, Dr. Chew or Dr. Louie may recommend a continuous positive airway pressure, or CPAP, machine. This machine blows a continuous stream of air that keeps your airway open while you sleep. To use the machine, you’ll need to wear a mask over your nose and mouth throughout the night.

If a CPAP machine doesn’t work well, or if you’d rather not use one, you may be able to improve your sleep apnea by wearing an oral device.

Major Insurance Plans Accepted

At Pacific ENT, we accept most major insurance plans. Here is a short-list of just some of the most popular plans we accept and for the full list, please click here. Please contact our office if you do not see your insurance provider listed here.

Click here for full list!

Anthem Blue Cross Blue Shield
Blue Shield of California
Brown & Toland
Great West Health Care
Health Net
Hill Physicians Medical Group
MultiPlan / PHCS
United Healthcare
Pacific ENT
929 Clay Street, Suite 501

San Francisco, CA 94108
Phone: 415-433-7945
Fax: (415) 433-1231
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