A consumer wearable device for tracking sleep respiratory events

Tondo, P., Dell’Olio, F., Lacedonia, D., Sabato, R., Leccisotti, R., Foschino Barbaro, M.P., Scioscia, G. (2022) Sleep and Breathing

Purpose: The diagnosis of obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) is instrument, operator, and time-dependent and therefore requires long waiting times. In recent decades, technological development has produced useful devices to monitor the health status of the population, including sleep. Therefore, the aim of this study was to evaluate a wearable device (WD) in a group of individuals at high risk of OSA. Methods: The study was conducted on consecutive subjects with high risk of OSA assessed by sleep questionnaires and clinical evaluation. All subjects performed cardio-respiratory monitoring (CRM) and WD simultaneously on a single night, after which the parameters of the two sleep investigations were compared. Results: Of 20 individuals enrolled, 60% were men and mean age was 57.3 ± 10.7 years. The apnea–hypopnea index (AHI) for the CRM was 23.1 ± 19.6 events·h−1 while it was 10.3 ± 8.3 events·h−1 for the WD. Correlation analysis between the results of the two investigations showed r = 0.19 (p = 0.40) for AHI and r = 0.4076 (p = 0.07) for sO2%. The accuracy for different stages of OSA severity was 70% in OSA cases and 60% in moderate to severe cases with sensitivity and specificity varying a great deal. Conclusion: Small and low-cost devices may prove to be a valuable resource to reduce costs and waiting times for a sleep investigation in suspected OSA. However, diagnosis of sleep apnea requires valid and reliable instruments, so validation tests are necessary before a device can be commercialized.