Stay up late for Twitter ‘sleep up’ to document sleep disorders

July 21, 2010

By Warren Kagarise

NEW — 10 a.m. July 21, 2010

Swedish Medical Center sleep experts want you to spend the night.

Sleep Medicine Associates, a Swedish affiliate, plans the first all-night “sleep up” Thursday — a live, online stream documenting a patient’s overnight sleep-disorder testing. During the event, sleep doctors and technicians will answer viewers’ questions via Twitter and in video interviews.

The team hopes to raise awareness about sleep disorders and treatments through the social media experiment.

The sleep up runs from 8 p.m. Thursday to 8 a.m. Friday. Sleepless in Seattle types can follow along here.

The sleep experts will monitor a consenting patient for sleep patterns, disorders and dream cycles as high-def cameras capture commentary from sleep specialists. Infrared cameras will watch over the patient’s sleep patterns and movements.

Doctors will also monitor and discuss the patient’s brain activity. Expect charts, graphs and other visuals in the live stream.

The sleep up starts at 8 p.m. with a live webcast with the patient, a sleep doctor and the patient’s wife.

Then the patient will bed down at Swedish’s Cherry Hill campus. Sleep Medicine Associates operates a clinic in Issaquah. Swedish has a standalone ER here. The hospital’s Issaquah Highlands campus is under construction and slated for a 2011 opening.

Turn to Twitter for more information during the sleep up.

Feeds will be posted by the hospital (@Swedish), the sleep clinic (@gosleepseattle), Swedish spokesman Ed Boyle (@edboyle), and social media gurus Aaron Blank and Drew Symonds (@SeattleBlank and @drewsymonds).

Use the hashtag #sleepup to chat with the team. Tweeting should start at about 7:30 p.m. Thursday.

Experts estimate more than 50 million adults in the United States suffer from a chronic sleep disorder. The often-curable disorders tend to cause daytime drowsiness, fatigue and distress.

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