Fibro and Sleep Apnea

  1. Greetings!

    At present, I am gearing up for pre-nursing (nursing is something that I have wanted to do for a while now) this next month but need some insight. I've had sleep apnea and fibromyalgia for several years now. Neither are severe and I've been able to manage them and keep them stable. Will these keep me from being hired on as a nurse or even from getting into nursing school?

    I am extremely motivated, so it's going to take a lot to keep me from trying, but I wanted to know if there are others out there who have gone through nursing school with the same or similar circumstances?

    Thank you!

    -A.
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  2. 5 Comments

  3. by   Ruby Vee
    I have sleep apnea and have been using CPAP for eight years. Granted, I was well through nursing school when it was diagnosed, but I don't see that it should hold you back at all. Just use your CPAP faithfully so you get good sleep. Good luck!
  4. by   LifelongNursing
    Also a CPAP user here, no chance at all to hurt your chances. I've seen the older nurse who has been in it for 35 or 40 years and about to retire, hobbling around, barely can feel their feet, and do just fine. Glad you are choosing to be a nurse!
  5. by   HyzenthlayLPN
    I was diagnosed with fibromyalgia in 2000. I worked part-time in my previous career from then to 2003 when I had to stop and was considered permanently fully disabled. At the end of 2006/beginning of 2007 my fibro went into remission and I was able to start working again. I started nursing school (LPN) in 2010 and made it through (I only remember having on minor flare up during school and was absent for a day). Passed to NCLEX-PN in 2011 and have been a nurse ever since.

    My fibro has for the most part stayed in almost full remission (with a few brief flares that lasted just a day or so) until this year. I had a major flare in June and had to take a medical leave for about 6 weeks (thankfully I was eligible for FMLA and have a short-term disability policy at work).

    So, it CAN be done. Take really good care of yourself: eat well, get lots of rest, stay on your medications and get some exercise. Nursing school is stressful so you need excellent skills for managing stress. Know your limits and don't allow anyone to bully you into pushing yourself too far.

    Sending positive thoughts your way!
  6. by   caffeinatednurse
    I've had fibromyalgia and inflammatory arthritis (of unknown autoimmune etiology) for about five years now. I received dx for both conditions while in nursing school. I managed the stress of nursing school just fine. I did, at one point, have to depend heavily on my family in order to do so. I flared towards the end of my first semester of nursing school, and ended up moving in with my parents. I was in my early 20s at the time, so it wasn't life-altering, but it did cause me to feel a little embarrassed at the time.

    I'm not sure what stage of life you are in at this time, but do make sure you have a good support system in place before you enter nursing school. Even those of us who are pretty darn good at managing our stress cannot control what our bodies decide to do. Should you flare while in school, you will be glad to have those resources to depend on.
  7. by   walkingrock
    I've been a nurse for over 38 years (working all that time). I was diagnosed with Chronic Fatigue in 1989, and Fibromyalgia in1998. I've been on meds for the fibromyalgia since shortly after being diagnosed for the fibro. That has made the difference between being able to work and being unable to get out of bed. Learning how to pace myself and say no to activities outside work has helped tremendously also. Definitely have to learn how to manage one's stress. Neither sleep apnea nor fibromyalgia should keep you from being a nurse, just take care of yourself and learn your limitations! There are a lot of us with these and other health issues.

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