For almost 50 years, sleep laboratories around the world have been collecting massive amounts of polysomnographic (PSG) physiological data to diagnose sleep disorders, the majority of which are not utilized in the clinical setting. Only a small fraction of the information available within these signals is utilized to generate indices. For example, the apnea–hypopnea index (AHI) remains the primary tool for diagnostic and therapeutic decision-making for obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) despite repeated studies showing it to be inadequate in predicting clinical consequences.
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Editorial on the Research Topic
The publication of “The Sleep Apnea Syndromes” by Guilleminault et al. in the 1970s hallmarked the discovery of a new disease entity involving serious health consequences. Obstructive sleep apnea was shown to be the most important disorder among the sleep apnea syndromes (SAS). In the course of time, it was found that the prevalence of obstructive sleep apnea reached the proportions of a global epidemic, with a major impact on public health, safety and the economy.