Other Diagnostic Testing

Sleep Studies

Sleep Studies deal with sleep disorders and sleep apnea.

Sleep apnea (AP-ne-ah) is a common disorder in which you have one or more pauses in breathing or shallow breaths while you sleep.

Breathing pauses can last from a few seconds to minutes. They may occur 30 times or more an hour. Typically, normal breathing then starts again, sometimes with a loud snort or choking sound.

Sleep apnea usually is a chronic (ongoing) condition that disrupts your sleep. When your breathing pauses or becomes shallow, you’ll often move out of deep sleep and into light sleep.

Untreated sleep apnea can:

  • Increase the risk of high blood pressure, heart attack, stroke, obesity and diabetes
  • Increase the risk of, or worsen, heart failure
  • Make arrhythmias (ah-RITH-me-ahs), or irregular heartbeats, more likely
  • Increase the chance of having work-related or driving accidents

While sleep apnea is a leading cause of excessive daytime sleepiness there are other sleep disorders including:

  • Insomnia
  • Narcolepsy
  • Parasomnias
  • Restless Legs/Periodic Limb Movements
  • REM Behavior Disorder
  • Sleep Apnea
  • Sleep Terrors/Nightmares

To obtain an appointment for a Sleep Study, a referral from a physician is required. If you believe you may need to be evaluated for sleep apnea, please make an appointment with your family physician or a pulmonologist in our Specialty Clinic.


An electroencephalogram, or EEG, detects abnormalities in the brain waves or electrical activity of the brain. During the procedure, electrodes consisting of small metal discs with thin wires are pasted on the scalp. The electrodes detect tiny electrical charges that result from the activity of the brain cells.

The charges are amplified and appear as a graph on a computer screen or as a recording that may be printed out on paper. A neurologist then interprets the reading.

The EEG is used to evaluate several types of brain disorders. It can also be used to diagnose other disorders that influence brain activity, such as Alzheimer’s disease, certain psychoses, and a sleep disorder called narcolepsy.

Additionally, the EEG may also be used to determine the overall electrical activity of the brain (for example, to evaluate trauma, drug intoxication, or extent of brain damage in comatose patients) and to monitor blood flow in the brain during surgical procedures.

There may be other reasons for your doctor to recommend an EEG. An EEG may be performed on an outpatient basis or as part of your stay in a hospital.

Physical Therapy

Physical Therapy is a type of treatment you may need when health problems make it hard to move around and do everyday tasks. It helps you move better and may relieve pain. It also helps improve or restore your physical function and your fitness level.

The goal of physical therapy is to make daily tasks and activities easier. For example, it may help with walking, going up stairs, or getting in and out of bed.

Physical therapy can help with recovery after some surgeries. Your doctor may suggest physical therapy for injuries or long-term health problems such arthritis or chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD).

Physical therapy may be used alone or with other treatments.

What to expect from your physical therapist

Your physical therapist will examine you and talk to you about your symptoms and your daily activity. He or she will then work with you on a treatment plan. The goals are to help your joints move better and to restore or increase your flexibility, strength, endurance, coordination, and/or balance.

First, your therapist will try to reduce your pain and swelling. Your physical therapist also may use manual therapy, education, and techniques such as heat, cold, water, ultrasound and electrical stimulation.

Physical therapy almost always includes exercise. It can include stretching, core exercises, weight lifting and walking. Your physical therapist may teach you an exercise program so you can do it at home.

HHC has physical therapists available Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. located in the lower level of the Henderson facility.

Specific treatments and services include:

  • Therapeutic exercise
  • Functional training
  • Education
  • Prescription and application of devices and equipment
  • Interventions to promote healing
  • Manual therapy
  • Electrotherapy
  • Ultrasound
  • Heat and cold modalities
  • Traction
  • Iontophoresis
  • Phonophoresis
  • Gait training

Speech Therapy

Speech therapists, or speech-language therapists provide treatment for patients who have problems with fluency, stuttering and slurred speech. They also evaluate swallowing and provide treatment for those patients who have difficulty. Speech therapy also is provided to patients with voice disorders. Both inpatients and outpatients are evaluated and treated.

Speech Pathology Services for Dysphagia

Individuals with difficulty swallowing are assessed clinically using patient history, observation and trial feedings. If appropriate, the patient is referred to speech therapy for a video swallow study of their swallowing function. This evaluation is conducted in the Radiology Department with a team of professionals including a Radiologist and Speech Pathologist.

If swallowing is impaired, therapy will address strengthening of the muscles needed for swallowing and establishing compensatory techniques. Therapy is necessary in these situations to teach strategies for safety and to reduce the risk of pneumonia.

HHC contracts with a speech therapist who makes weekly appointments, as needed.

Occupational Therapy

Occupational Therapy is a health and rehabilitation profession. Occupational therapists work with people of all ages who need specialized assistance to lead independent, productive, and satisfying lives due to physical, developmental, social, or emotional problems.

The occupational therapist (OT) helps people of all ages (from newborns to older adults) who have an illness or disability to do those things that are important and meaningful to them such as eating, dressing, school activities, and work. The OT helps by making changes in any of the things that may limit an individual’s ability to do those tasks, including the environment, the task, or the person’s skills needed for the task. OTs also have the knowledge and training to work with people with a mental illness or emotional problem such as depression and/or stress.

HHC contracts with an occupational therapist who makes daily visits.