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December 21, 1979

Polygraphic Studies and Sleep Disorders-Reply

Author Affiliations

Pennsylvania State University College of Medicine Hershey

JAMA. 1979;242(25):2759. doi:10.1001/jama.1979.03300250015011

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In Reply.—  Our position consistently has been that the primary care physician is able to diagnose and care for the vast majority of patients with sleep disorders without referring them for specialized, all-night sleep studies. That Dr Regestein has found it necessary to evaluate only 10% of the patients in his sleep disorders clinic with all-night sleep recordings lends strong support to our position.It is probable that most of the patients seen in his clinic have been screened by their physician before referral. Since only 10% of Dr Regestein's patients require polygraphic sleep recordings, one would expect in general practice for the overall percentage to be much smaller of those patients with sleep disorders who would require all-night monitoring.Both our experience and that of Dr Regestein indicate that by taking a thorough medical history, the physician can screen for specific etiologic and contributing factors for a given sleep