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OMC Sleep Lab undergoes expansion

New equipment, additional rooms added to facility

An expansion of the Ozarks Medical Center Sleep Lab, located in the OMC Parkway Center, is under way and expected to be complete at the end of February.

"This is a very exciting time for the OMC Sleep Lab as we grow and expand to meet the needs of the community," said Juan Mella, MD, Medical Director of Respiratory and Sleep Medicine at OMC. "With a highly trained staff, state-of-the-art technology and a specially designed facility, our accredited Sleep Lab offers high quality, compassionate care to adults and children who may suffer from sleep disorders."

The Sleep Lab moved to a new facility in OMC Parkway Center in 2013, combining state-of-the-art technology with a hotel-like atmosphere. The facility has four bedrooms for sleep studies, each featuring a flat-screen television, sound-proof walls, individually controlled heating and cooling units, and a private restroom with shower. The current project will add two rooms to the facility, which were included in the original Sleep Lab construction but left unfinished until needed.

According to Clinic Supervisor Jared Jung, the Sleep Lab has seen tremendous growth since Dr. Mella began in 2014. Dr. Mella is board certified in internal medicine, pulmonary and sleep medicine.

"Currently, we see patients for sleep studies seven nights a week to keep up with demand and prevent patients from having to wait too long for an appointment," Jung added.

In addition to the new rooms, the Sleep Lab is upgrading its equipment, which collects sleep study data; has purchased three new systems for conducting home sleep tests; and will now have a bariatric bed available for overnight studies.

More than 40 million Americans suffer from chronic, long-term sleep disorders. Sleep disorders can interrupt your daily activities and health and lead to memory loss, anxiety and depression, disorientation, change in mood, headaches, excessive daytime sleepiness, irritability, and decreased ability to concentrate.

"It is important that those who suspect they might have a sleep disorder to seek a diagnosis and treatment," Dr. Mella said. "The risks of inadequate sleep extend way beyond tiredness. Some disorders, such as sleep apnea, can cause damage to the heart and lungs that can even lead to stroke, heart attack and death."

Symptoms of sleep disorders include trouble falling asleep and staying asleep, difficulties adhering to a consistent sleep cycle, sleep walking, difficulties staying awake or excessive snoring.

For more information about sleep disorders or the sleep lab, contact the OMC Sleep Lab at 417-257-5859.

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