Sleepiness accounts for 31 percent to 41 percent of the major crashes of commercial vehicles. According to recent research, the latest two step test could make roads safer .The test is 91-percent accurate at predicting who has sleep apnea. The study was done to help predict which commercial drivers are at risk of sleep apnea and could fall asleep at the wheel.
Sleep apnea is a serious sleep disorder in which a person pauses in breathing during sleep for 10 seconds or longer and then resumes breathing. It results in excessive daytime sleepiness. Researchers conducted research to come up with a test to identify drivers who suffer from severe sleep apnea.
In order to create the test, 406 commercial drivers answered questions and underwent different medical tests. After extensive analysis, researchers found the most accurate test to determine sleep apnea includes questions about the symptoms of sleep apnea, with body weight data plus a test for oxygen concentration in the blood when needed. Researchers say when the questionnaire portion is used the test is 81-percent predictive of sleep apnea, and the test is 91-percent predictive when the oxygen test is added.
Thus researchers say this two-stage screening test is likely to be a viable means of excluding severe sleep apnea among commercial drivers.