Allergy to CPAP machine

General Discussion on any topic relating to CPAP and/or Sleep Apnea.
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Re: Allergy to CPAP machine

Post by ozij » Mon Feb 02, 2009 2:49 am

  1. Standalone humidifier
  2. A fleece hose cover for the main hose
  3. A fleece hose cover for the narrow, mask tube if you have that kind of mask
  4. Heated hose
Sometimes you need all of the above to get enough humuidity into your nose. The runny nose can be a response to dryness.


Machine: S9 AutoSet™ CPAP Machine
Mask: Hybrid Full Face CPAP Mask with Nasal Pillows and Headgear
Humidifier: S9™ Series H5i™ Heated Humidifier with Climate Control
Additional Comments: Software: Updated version of ResScan. First machine (5 years) was PB420E. Tried others including Autoset S8 II
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Re: Allergy to CPAP machine

Post by stevef1007 » Mon Feb 02, 2009 5:44 pm

chander wrote:I have been using RESMED ESCAPE S8 Cpap machine for almost a year. I have been using it with nasal pillow mask and I have also tried triangular nose mask.
Whenever I use it, I get up in the morning with severe sneezing, runny nose, painful watery eyes which lasts for 2-3 days if I stop using CPAP. Some days I will be perfectly fine and if I use CPAP for 1-2 hour nap, I get up with these symptoms.
I have tried changing filters, liquid soaps for cleaning and humidifier settings varied from 1-6. On doctor's advice, I have tried Claritin, flonase but no relief from this misery. Any suggestions as I can not quit CPAP due to severe Apnea.
I could have written your post. And have tried almost all the suggestions here. I'll keep researching and reading and hope somebody can save us. Good luck. I know how miserable it is.

Additional Comments: pressure 16, 2 liters of O2. Thinking of going to full face or mouth mask to help with horrible sneezing, runny nose problems.
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Re: Allergy to CPAP machine

Post by Joeymoe » Thu Feb 05, 2009 11:51 am

I have the identical symptoms. I went from Feb 2008 to Sep 2008 without missing a day of CPAP use. Never a problem. Then the allergy symptoms started slowly and sporadically. Now I'm at the point of just using it for 2 hours sends me off on a sneezing jag. I will try some of the suggestions I've seen on these posts and report back. (Using an Elite S8 with integrated humidifier. Johnson Baby Shampoo to clean. Distilled water and CPAP resting on carpeted floor).

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Re: Allergy to CPAP machine

Post by kebsa » Fri Feb 06, 2009 7:19 am

I have only been using bipap for 4 weeks and in the first 2 weeks i would wake with my sinuses burning, i would have loads of bloody mucous - they sent me home without a humidifier to begin with and things improved a bit when i got hold of one in week 2 but it was still not great. I have always had problems with hayfever and allergies at this time of year (our summer) and had been a mouth breather for yonks! I got one of those sinus douche kits at the suggestion of a friend and used it every night before connecting up my machine- it is not pleasant but it certainly has been effective- not only has it solved the problem with the bipap but my sinus' are clearer than they have been for years!

Mask: Mirage Micro™ Nasal CPAP Mask with Headgear
Humidifier: HumidAire 2i™ Heated Humidifier
Additional Comments: Resmed Vpap Adapt SV

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Re: Allergy to CPAP machine

Post by Joy_Of_Sleep » Fri Feb 06, 2009 9:50 am

I had this problem almost from Day One, and since I use nasal pillows, I was sneezing the pillows out after about 3 hours of having them on. DME suggested using only white vinegar for cleaning the equipment, instead of the mild soaps I had been using. I don't know if it was that or the Flonase the doc started me on the same night, but I haven't had a sneezing incident since I started using only white vinegar for cleaning.

Gene Willard

Re: Allergy to CPAP machine

Post by Gene Willard » Fri Feb 13, 2009 6:28 pm

My supplier brought me a new reservoir from Resmed and so far (2 Wks) the allergies are gone. I buy the filters by the dozens and change them regularly. They have reshaped the reservoir, which was leaking. too.

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Re: Allergy to CPAP machine

Post by darren » Thu Jun 25, 2009 4:51 am

Hi all,

I've been using my CPAP for over 12 months now, never a problem until 3 weeks ago.

I'm in Australia and it's just gone into our winter. I'm wondering if anyone of you found a cure to the problems you've described above.

For the last three weeks I've been having long lasting sneezing fits and my nose runs like crazy or blocks up like mad, I'm also going through a box of kleenex a day.

I don't use distilled water but will start trying that from today and report back here the results. I use the S8 with humidifier and the Swift LT nasal pillows.

How have others faired with curing this problem?


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Re: Allergy to CPAP machine

Post by tomjax » Thu Jun 25, 2009 6:18 am

It is amazing and amusing to see many folks posting on the thing PAP may cause.
It seems some try to connect anything that happens to them with the PAP.
Many PAP users have lots of things go wrong That are totally unrelated to their PAP usage.
Some things may be causal, many are coincidental.
But this will never prevent some from blaming PAP.
Do your critical thinking.

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Re: Allergy to CPAP machine

Post by Pugsy » Thu Jun 25, 2009 6:29 am

Hi Darren,
If you google CPAP & nasal congestion you will get loads of information. I know because I have the same thing going on with me last few days. The majority of the causes is listed as a drying out of the nasal mucosa a sinus areas.
When the mucosa gets too dried out it freaks out and engorges with blood to try to generate more moisture. This generates symptoms very similar to an allergy attack.
Allergy med are zero help for me.

Everyplace says to add moisture some how to those nasal mucosa. Increase humidifier, use saline rinses, neti pot (yuck). Hot showers help me significantly, unfortunately don't last all day.

It has got better for me. The marathon sneezing has stopped but the congestion and runny nose still comes and goes significant. Final resort, speak to doctor about adding prescription nasal sprays that might help.

Some people will say that too much moisture cause these same symptoms for them and using less humidity with CPAP helps. You are in early winter, early heat to house, drying out of house humidity with heat? My bet is on the drying of the mucosa.

Changing to distilled water won't help. I have been using it from the onset.

People told me that this thing just seems to happen from time to time on therapy and we just deal with it.
I sure hope it doesn't happen very often.
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Re: Allergy to CPAP machine

Post by Sleepy Taz » Thu Jun 25, 2009 6:49 am

I have had this problem every year from November to March and My thoughts were that is was allergies also. I received a new machine at the beginning of March this year with a heated humidifier and immediately my symptoms disappeared. It also could've been moving to a completely non smoking environment but that wouldn't explain April to October with no problems. If you have a heated humidifier, try different settings as that will make a difference. There is no doubt in my mind that your problems stem from Humidity and you should try each method until you find what is right for you.
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Re: Allergy to CPAP machine

Post by Muse-Inc » Thu Jun 25, 2009 1:00 pm

My allergies are triggered by cleaners and stuff in the air and 'just kuz' for no apparent reason (also have vasomotor rhinitis & chronic sinusitis). Had to throw out several pillows 'cause the stuff living in my nose <gross> degraded the silicon!

Here's what's working for me:
Humidifier tub daily
7th Generation for dishes unscented soap & water, soak while showering, scrub with fingers, rinse.
While wet spray with white vinegar (the cheap kind 5%), let sit 1-2 minutes, rinse very very well, let air dry on clean washcloth on nightstand.

Pillows daily
Squirt above soap into each pillow and scrub with fingers, let sit on sink all soapy while showering, rinse very well. If not perfectly clear, dissolve 1/4 teaspon bromelan powder (it's from pineapples, find at heath food stores as loose powder) in hot water then add pillows and let soak 10-60 mins until clear when rinsed. This is the only thing that has worked to keep the pillows clean and free of something that will set my allergies off. I do not soak these in vinegar as the residue set off my allergies.

Weekly: 2-6ft hoses, ResMed humidifier cover & gasket
Soak in 7th Gen soap and water, rinse. Hang hose to dry for 8-10 hrs, then put on machine & let dry for 10 -15 mins, hang for use. Air dry cover & gasket.

Every other wk or thereabouts: headgear & plastic holder of pillows
Soak in 7th Gen soap and water, rinse, hang to dry.
Note: I tried washing the pillow suport more often without an improvement, so I quit washing so often; if I get a cold, I wash this daily.

Check filter and replace if needed (mine are not washable).

Nasal irrigation with Grossan gadget & solution when really congested. While it sounds disgusting (sorta like a WaterPik for nose) & ya gotta figure out the angles inside your nose, it's actually pleasant when ya get the hang of it.

Dinner time
1 spray each nostril Astepro (new addition that's working so far to keep nose decongested)<fingers crossed>, chew gum to mask yukky taste. It congests me for about an hr and then clears up. I'm guessing my nose doesn't like the sucralose...why didn't they use Xylitol which isn't a nasal tissue irritant and starves the bugs that live in noses/sinuses? <dummies>

Spray each nostril once with Nasonex, wait 5 mins for it to dry. Put on mask. Check humidifer setting: if humidity is high, turn to 2 or lower; if low, increase; if have rainout or wet pillows, turn lower. So far I've not had to add a hose cover but it doesn't get really really code here and my hose is partly under my bed covers or pillow (depending on which side I'm sleeping on).

My CPAP sits on a library step (those 1-step 'thingees') next to the head of my bed keeping it up off the floor & it's dust, etc.

If my nose is dry, I use saline sprays. Because I drink lots of water, I seldom need the saline spray.

Machine: S9 AutoSet™ CPAP Machine
Mask: Hybrid Full Face CPAP Mask with Nasal Pillows and Headgear
Humidifier: HumidAire H4i™ Heated Humidifier
Additional Comments: Started 8/07. CPAP Escape set to 11 then 9, S9 APAP range 9.8-16.
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Re: Allergy to CPAP machine

Post by twasbrillig » Thu Jun 25, 2009 6:57 pm

There is a kind of nasal issue called eosinophilic rhinitis. It's not an allergy, but it has very similar symptoms. There is also something called vasomotor rhinitis. I am sorry I don't have any sites to recommend. I would definitely look into these.

One medication that works well with both allergic rhinitis and vasomotor rhinitis is Astelin. It's an antihistamine nasal spray. I use it now (in conjunction with steroid nasal spray) and I find it's easy to use and doesn't have any side effects.

Mask: OptiLife Nasal Pillow CPAP Mask with Headgear
Additional Comments: Have also used RESMED Liberty, and Fisher and Paykel Flexifit 431
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Re: Allergy to CPAP machine

Post by Muse-Inc » Thu Jun 25, 2009 9:36 pm

twasbrillig wrote:...eosinophilic rhinitis...
Go here:

Great info!!!

I have vasomotor & gustary (to wheat) picnic. The scent of soaps and eucalytus really trigger congestion in my nasal passageways. Do you have an idea...well y'all probaly do or you wouldn't be reading this

Machine: S9 AutoSet™ CPAP Machine
Mask: Hybrid Full Face CPAP Mask with Nasal Pillows and Headgear
Humidifier: HumidAire H4i™ Heated Humidifier
Additional Comments: Started 8/07. CPAP Escape set to 11 then 9, S9 APAP range 9.8-16.
Never, never, never, never say never.

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Re: Allergy to CPAP machine

Post by darren » Fri Jun 26, 2009 1:21 am

Thank you everyone for your replies, they are all really helpful.

I do have a humidifier and was running it at the same level I was during summer which was a really low setting, so I cranked it up last night. I have a cover for the hose to help decrease condensation although at about 5am there was quite a bit in the loop beside the bed and it needed emptying. It's not a heated hose/cover but not sure I need to go down that path just yet. I keep the S8 on my bedside table so it's not near the carpet. I also cleaned the bedside table of any dust today.

Anyway, so far no marathon sneezing sessions today. My nose is a little congested, of course it may take a few days for that to clear. I've also got myself a saline nasal spray and am using it regularly today, it's not too bad at all really, in fact it gives some really good relief. I have to say this is a pretty radical turnaround given what I've gone through for the last few weeks. I'll report back on the progress in a few days.

Again - thanks very much !!

- darren.

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Re: Allergy to CPAP machine

Post by Birddog » Fri Jun 26, 2009 5:07 pm

I always have everything block up in my head most of the time when i put on the mask and i cant breathe.The pressure makes everything that is sinus blockages start to loosen up and block all my breathing till i take the mask off and blow the nose a few times and sometimes still i have to lay my head on the side with the nose pointing toward the pillow somewhat for my nose airflow to start

Mask: Mirage Activa™ LT Nasal CPAP Mask with Headgear
Additional Comments: Wife has same setup & Have Respironics DS100 M series & DS500 auto W/C-flex Backup Machines