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Sounds Can Penetrate Deep Sleep And Enhance Associated Memories Upon Waking

They were in a deep sleep, yet sounds, such as a teakettle whistle and a cat's meow, somehow penetrated their slumber. The 25 sounds presented during the nap were reminders of earlier spatial learning, though the Northwestern University research participants were unaware of the sounds as they slept. Yet, upon waking, memory tests showed that spatial memories had changed. The participants were more accurate in dragging an object to the correct location on a computer screen for the 25 images whose corresponding sounds were presented during sleep (such as a muffled explosion for a photo of dynamite) than for another 25 matched objects. "The research strongly suggests that we don't shut down our minds during deep sleep, " said John Rudoy, lead author of the study and a neuroscience Ph.

Is Surgery The Best Answer For Children With Sleep Apnea?

For children with obstructive sleep apnea, standard care often includes a tonsillectomy and adenoidectomy. But researchers at Saint Louis University say further research is needed to determine if surgery is the best option for these patients. "We know surgery is associated with improvements in children with sleep apnea, but this research will be the first to allow us to investigate whether or not the surgery causes those improvements, " says Ron Mitchell, M.D., professor of otolaryngology at Saint Louis University and the research study's principal investigator. "In the future, the information we gather from this study may help us know when to recommend surgery immediately and when it is most appropriate to wait and see whether the child will grow out of the problem.

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Baby's Sleep Position Is The Major Factor In 'Flat-Headedness'

A baby's sleep position is the best predictor of a misshapen skull condition known as deformational plagiocephaly - or the development of flat spots on an infant's head - according to findings reported by Arizona State University scientists in the December issue of the journal Pediatrics. Analyzing the largest database to date, more than 20, 000 children, the ASU researchers found that the number of babies who have developed flat-headedness has dramatically increased since 1992. The increase coincides with the American Academy of Pediatrics launch of a "Back to Sleep" educational campaign that recommended parents place their infants on their backs to reduce the risk of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome.

New Sleep Medicine Research Presented At CHEST 2009

CPAP Therapy Associated With Slight Weight Gain (#7833) Continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP), a common therapy for sleep apnea, is associated with a slight but temporary weight gain in patients. Researchers from the University of Toledo Medical College in Ohio followed 152 patients who underwent CPAP therapy for 1 month. Of the patients, 119 (78 percent) gained an average of 3 lbs. Weight gain occurred in 81 percent of men and 73 percent of women. A subgroup of 71 patients who remained on therapy demonstrated gain in mass at 4 weeks, which did not persist at 6 months. Researchers speculate that the weight gain is due to increased vascular volume.

New Thrombosis Research Presented At CHEST 2009

Extended Therapy for Blood Clot Prevention Yields Greater Benefits in Hip/Knee Surgery (#8587) Patients undergoing total knee replacement (TKR) or total hip replacement (THR) surgeries may experience better outcomes if they receive extended therapy for the prevention of thrombosis (blood clots). Researchers from the University of Ottawa, ON, and Ortho-McNeil Pharmaceutical found that 2, 140 patients undergoing TKR or THR who received short-duration ( 14 days) thromboprophylaxis experienced three times as many venous thromboembolism events, two times as many DVT events, six times as many pulmonary embolism events, and four times more major bleeding events than the 1, 055 patients who received extended-duration therapy ( 15 days).

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Split-Second Decision Making Negatively Affected By Sleep Deprivation

Sleep deprivation adversely affects automatic, accurate responses and can lead to potentially devastating errors, a finding of particular concern among firefighters, police officers, soldiers and others who work in a sleep-deprived state, University of Texas at Austin researchers say. Psychology professors Todd Maddox and David Schnyer found moderate sleep deprivation causes some people to shift from a faster and more accurate process of information categorization (information-integration) to a more controlled, explicit process (rule-based), resulting in negative effects on performance. The researchers examined sleep deprivation effects on information-integration, a cognitive operation that relies heavily on implicit split-second, gut-feeling decisions.

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