The Jakarta Post, Jakarta
Persahabatan Hospital in Rawamangun, East Jakarta, recently opened a specialized center to treat people suffering from sleep disorders.
Declaring itself Indonesia's first center for sleep disorder treatment, the center offers a "comprehensive" range of diagnoses and treatments.
Center coordinator Budhi Antariksa said it was in response to the needs of patients that Persahabatan Hospital, which is the national reference center for respiratory problems, established the sleep center, which officially opened earlier this month.
"Indonesia doesn't have any data regarding the number of people suffering from sleep disorders, but the country accounts for around 50 percent of the total number of sleep disorder patients at some hospitals in Singapore and Malaysia. So, why not build our own sleep center here?" Budhi said recently.
He said the establishment of the center was aimed at not only providing medical care to the community, but also at developing medical education in the country, with Persahabatan Hospital's close links to the University of Indonesia's School of Medicine.
Each patient treated at the sleep center, according to Budhi, will first have an interview where they will be asked to list all sleep-related complaints they may have.
The results of the interview will determine whether a patient needs to undergo a polysomnogram, a special test commonly used to diagnose sleep disorders.
According to hospital officials, the sleep center features a team of doctors from a variety of disciplines, including two pulmonologists; two ear, nose and throat specialists (ENTs); a cardiologist; a neurologist; a pediatrician; and a psychiatrist.
"If the problem is caused by obstruction of the airway, the patient will be handed over to pulmonologists or ENTs. If it is related to a neurological disorder, he/she will be sent to neurologists, and so on," Budhi said.
The sleep center's polysomnograph machine is able to monitor different body functions during sleep, including brain and eye movement, muscle activity, heart rhythm and respiratory efforts.
The gathered data can then be used to diagnose different types of sleep disorders, including sleep apnea (the obstruction of the airway during sleep, causing loud snoring and sudden awakenings when breathing stops); narcolepsy (the condition of falling asleep spontaneously and unwillingly at inappropriate times); restless legs syndrome (an irresistible urge to move legs); REM behavior disorder (acting out violent or dramatic dreams while in REM sleep); and parasomnias (include a variety of disruptive sleep-related events).
Budhi said Persahabatan Hospital has had its polysomnograph since the end of 2005, and has so far treated about 35 patients with the machine.
Two other hospitals in the city have polysomnographs. They are Mitra Keluarga Hospital in Kemayoran, Central Jakarta, and Medistra Hospital on Jl. Gatot Subroto in South Jakarta.
"But we're the only one that has a team of specialists from multiple disciplines. That's why I can say we're the only sleep disorder treatment center in Indonesia," said Budhi.
To learn more about the services at Persahabatan Hospital's sleep center, you can dial 4891708, ext. 209/296. Or you can come to the Griya Puspa building at the Persahabatan Hospital complex. (wda)