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  • Sleep apnoea

    I was wondering if anybody on here suffers from sleep apnoea? If you don't know what it is then basically it means that when you are asleep you suddenly stop breathing for a few seconds and then start breathing again when your brain realises that you're not breathing. In fact, you may not even though you've got it. If for instance you fall asleep in your chair during the day and then suddenly wake up snorting and feeling a bit odd and this keeps happening every time you nod off that there is a possibility you may suffer from it. During a recent visit to Salisbury hospital to have a kidney stayed removed they tested me for apnoea and I did show signs of having it. So I have got to have some more tests done and I may have to wear an oxygen mask at night.
    Tetraplegic & Spinal Injury Site


  • #2
    I think it's fairly common with those with SCI. I fell asleep at the wheel and drove into a ditch. Was lucky I was on my small road and going under 20mph. Had just gotten off the Freeway. Did a test and ended up with a BiPAP that I use every night. Sleep Apnea can be a killer so good you're getting tested. Surprised it's taking more than one test though. They have a nasal pillow that works really well vs a full mask. It'll make a big difference in your energy level.
    Last edited by Patrick Madsen; 02-28-2019, 02:39 AM.

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    • #3
      I use the mouthpiece. It moves the lower jaw and tongue forward in order to prevent the tongue from blocking the passage of air. The mouthpiece is much more convenient, portable, easier to clean, requires no maintenance, and it costs less. But it works only if the tongue is the cause of sleep apnea. If the cause is elsewhere it won't work.

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      • #4
        I get it occasionally and usually when I do, I will build up saliva in my mouth. I wake up unable to swallow and end up spitting the saliva out. If I had a bed mate, I'd be in trouble.

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        • #5
          I was diagnosed with it soon after my SCI injury. I had a couple of tests and my AHI (apneas per hour) ranged from about 60 to almost 100. So my breathing was stopping more than once per minute. I was prescribed a CPAP that, for a few years, seemed to do some good. The doctor determined that I had central apnea, as opposed to the more common obstructive apnea. In my case the brain just wasn't telling the lungs to breathe. Apparently that's common with SCI. Then I was prescribed a BIPAP, which goes to a higher pressure when the user starts to inhale and a lower pressure when it senses the user is trying to exhale. That was better, though still not great. Finally I got an ASV (auto servo ventilator). It senses when it's time to inhale (about five seconds) and increases the pressure even if I have not started a breath. And it learns how much pressure I need based on recent experience. That, in conjunction with the Phillips Respironics Amara View face mask works well for me. My AHI averages around 3 now, with an occasional night at zero.

          I tried a bunch of masks. Some leaked too much. Two leaked acceptably but caused a pressure sore on the bridge of my nose. The Amara View mask works well in conjunction with the Remzzz fabric liner. I wish I could use a nasal pillow, but with it the air just goes in my nose and out my mouth.

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          • #6
            I have been using the sleep apnea mask and machine for several years. Thank God for it. Much better sleep and rest. Can't do without. Follow through with your testing and, the advice they offer to you.
            I refuse to tip toe through life, only to arrive safely at death.

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            • #7
              About 9 years ago after a severe bout with pneumonia for 5 months, and requiring ventilator, I was discharged from hospital needing to use a bi-pap machine. I was diagnosed with central apnea (similar to endo_aftermath). I am elderly and after years Polio paralysis, but no major problems, I had to have overnight ventilation as my chest muscles were wearing out.

              After a time I needed a ventilator instead of the bi-pap machine. I was concerned as there was no real warning while on my ventilator as to oxygen levels, and I wondered what would happen if I didn't take a breath. The ventilator just keeps blowing. Therefore I looked into a wrist watch gizmo with a sensor for the fingertip (Amazon) - it displays oxygen level in addition to pulse and is rechargeable. I wear it every night. On some nights the alarm wakes me or my husband up and sure enough, my oxygenation has fallen to unacceptable levels - usually between 79 and 83, while a more normal level is 98. I have set my alarm watch to go off if I drop to 83 oxygen level. The pulse warning can also be set if desired. On one occasion my ventilator supplier borrowed the watch as they wanted to use the feature that lets you download the data from the watch over a period of time. I think this might even substitute for a sort of sleep study.

              I guess I don't want to take a chance that my brain will kick in when my levels are low and make me gulp a breath when there's an apnea event.

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              • #8
                I love my BiPap machine. I haven’t missed a night in over 15 years!

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                • #9
                  Not uncommon in individuals with spinal cord dysfunction. As a matter of fact, it is not uncommon in the general population. If you have it and follow the treatments, you will feel amazingly better. You didn't know you were so tired!
                  ckf
                  The SCI-Nurses are advanced practice nurses specializing in SCI/D care. They are available to answer questions, provide education, and make suggestions which you should always discuss with your physician/primary health care provider before implementing. Medical diagnosis is not provided, nor do the SCI-Nurses provide nursing or medical care through their responses on the CareCure forums.

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                  • #10
                    There was a very good article in NYT about a few days ago.

                    https://www.nytimes.com/guides/well/sleep-apnea-guide

                    A Guide to Sleep Apnea

                    • [*=center]Do You Have It?
                      [*=center]Sleep Apnea's Toll
                      [*=center]Understand It
                      [*=center]Recognize It
                      [*=center]Treat It

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                    • #11
                      I suffered this 30 years ago, long before my SCI. I was in poor health due to mol allergies and candidiasis. With some changes in my home and a radical change of diet the problem went away.

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                      • #12
                        i have it as well i am supposed to be using a biped machine however Medicare is fighting it for some reason. i am currently using O2,not a perfect solution but it is i think working for the time being.
                        T6 Incomplete due to a Spinal cord infarction July 2009

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