Fellow sleep apnea sufferers, can I ask a question?

Nurses General Nursing


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How is the CPAP working on a continued basis? I was glad when you posted that bit about having a lot more energy that day....

I've been for my second visit, and I guess I'm gonna get the kind with the nasal cannula. It's what I had during the sleep test, anyway. It was AWFUL! My nose was a little bit stuffed up, so the sleep tech said I had to squirt some afrin in there. So I did - one squirt instead of 2 because that stuff is POWERFUL.

It opened me up for the sleep test, but man that apparatus is uncomfortable! I couldn't really sleep on my side, and that's how I like to sleep - it kept doing weird things to me!! And they had warmed humidity going, but I woke up with a horrible headache.

I *never* get headaches! Plus then I immediately get the rebound from the afrin and I was totally, 100% plugged up - felt like cotton wool in both sinuses. I don't know if that was rebound from the afrin or from having the air squirted up my nose all night.

I don't know when I'll get the insurance stuff sorted out but I'm NOT looking forward to having this contraption!!!!



hoolahan, ASN, RN

1 Article; 1,721 Posts

Specializes in Home Health.

Dennie, it is sooo much better when you are in the comfort of your own home w/o eeg, pulse ox, ekg, yada yada hooked up.

I have not had an easy time here. First mask the dog chewed up the gel spacer that goes on the forehead, it was the comfort select....anything BUT comfortable! I placed a 2x2 where the gel was all goey, and after the third day I got such a rash, looked like a huge hive, next day spread to the right side of my nose. All my pt's said "Wow, you really got a big one." One lady said when I started to explain it was not a zit, she cut me off and said, "Oh yeah, you picked it didn't you?!" Cracked me up. I did look like a freak.

SO, my advice to you is...speak to the case managers in your hospital or agency, find out where the nearest DME dealer is to your home. Somewhere you can go to get personalized fit of several different masks.

I thought to myself, what am I stupid? How many times have I given referrals to my local DME co? They are right in town too! So I called my new best friend Michelle RRT, and she said, come right over. She fit me w a mirage mask, MUCH more comfortable, but even so, still not fitting properly. It was almost on top of my lip, and if I moved it up, it leaked from the top of my nose. Plus, from putting it on too tight, I got makrs on both sides of my nose now. They are now like decubs, and let me tell you, Saturday night I said screw this and slept w/o it, but last night, even tho they weren't healed, I got those little circle bandaids and used them.

Today, met w Michelle again. I thought I needed a shorter mask, but she fit me w a medium sized glod seal. The top of the mask is much narrower, and that seemed to solve the problem of leaking from the top, and it is sooooo much more comfortable. But I am really afraid I may have a bad reaction to the gel, and end up w my whole face a hivey mess.

But, I feel soooo much better, I am determined to trouble shoot this to death. The second mask cost me $125 plus had wonderful headgear, so much better. Today, Michelle refused to take any money from me. and I know this mask is at least $95 from pricing on line. If this doesn't work, I'm trying the nasal pillows. I also have had NO problems w/o the chin strap. And hubby reports no snoring, only a little hissing now and then, which does wake me up, so my sleep has not been really great. Last night was the best I slept, once I forgot about the buring pain on eiother side of my nose, and I didn't have to get up early, so I slept from about midnight to 9am!!! Ahhhh! Felt so good, I hopped right out of bed into the shower, and began housework. Not something I normally get revved up about! But hubby was happy when he came home.

Dennie, all I can say that I have learned so far is, there are a LOT of options to choose from. If it doesn't work, in a day or two, go back and try something new or get them to work w you. Take your machine when you go so they can really check things out. Some people seemed to make such an easy adjustment, but for me it has definitely not be easy, but I do feel better, and I am determined come hel or high water to make it work, and for it to be a comfortable solution.

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