Royal Philips Electronics, Murrysville, Pa, is continuing its behind the scenes support of NBC’s The Biggest Loser in the fall 2009 season.
Last season (spring 2009) marked the first time in the show’s history that contestants received comprehensive diagnosis and treatment for obstructive sleep apnea (OSA). Philips Respironics teamed with Advanced Sleep Medicine Services Inc, Nationwide Medical Inc, and Clete Kushida, MD, PhD, of Stanford University Medical Center, to provide testing, diagnosis, treatment, therapy, and medical equipment to contestants competing in the show.
“I have put in place a new policy that all contestants need to undergo a sleep study in future seasons. The results have been astonishing after two seasons of testing. Over three-quarters of those contestants tested have needed sleep therapy while on the show,” said Robert Huizenga, MD, medical expert for The Biggest Loser in an announcement.
Prior to the upcoming season, contestants were administered a sleep study at Advanced Sleep Medicine Services Inc facilities in California. All 16 of the contestants had sleep apnea. After the testing, Huizenga and Kushida worked with each contestant to administer and oversee treatment.
During their time on The Ranch, Nationwide Medical Inc consults with the contestants. Philips Respironics facilitated the entire process and provided technologies and patient interface equipment.
“It has been exciting to meet the new group of contestants and to help them understand the importance of sleep and its role in overall health,” said Pam Minkley, clinical trainer, and member of the on-site Philips Respironics team.
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