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General Discussion on any topic relating to CPAP and/or Sleep Apnea.
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blarg
 
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My Aura Adjustments

Postby blarg on Sun Jan 21, 2007 11:53 pm

This is nowhere near as dramatic as whipping out a saw and going after my Aura, but I've been using it very comfortably with low to no leaks for about two weeks now. I love this interface.

The main problem I had originally was that it was unstable, as many others have mentioned. The wrong twist, turn, etc, would pop the pillows out and leaks galore. Most of this was fixed when I adjusted the horizontal adjustment as far in as it would go, but it still wasn't where I would have liked it to be.

So, looking at the pillows themselves, I had an idea. The insides of the hard plastic tubes that go right about at the bridge of your nose were cut out. It looked like the designers wanted to make the mask more comfortable there if it happened to rest on the bridge of your nose. Well, it wasn't touching, but wouldn't it become more stable if it were?

So, I bent the hell out of the adjustment wires and added a cover to arrive at this:

Image

Image

The red and orange colored bit is the same fleece I used for my hose cover. I find that now, when I wear the mask, it rests comfortably on the bridge of my nose, which keeps the whole mask in place. In order to get the mask off my nose with these modifications, I have to tilt the headgear in such a way that it would be coming off before the pillows pop out.

The fleece is very important for three reasons:
1) That plastic piece isn't comfortable at all without it.
2) It fills in some space to bring the assembly down to where it touches my nose.
3) I've found it actually helps lessen rainout in the mask. :shock:

Image

So, while not as revolutionary as "Throw it in a paper shredder", these adjustments changed the Aura from a nice mask to a VERY nice mask, and I wanted to share them in the hopes that others could benefit from my discovery.

Happy xPAPing!


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rested gal
 
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Postby rested gal on Mon Jan 22, 2007 12:12 am

You earned one, blarg! Very creative, very smart! :wink:

Image

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CollegeGirl
 
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Postby CollegeGirl on Mon Jan 22, 2007 11:03 am

Hi blarg - thanks for posting this. I never have issues with leakage due to my favorite accessory - my pantyhose strap. :D But I'm trying to envision what you've done here, and I can't really figure it out. Any chance you could take a photo with the fleece cover off so that we can see what you're talking about a little better? Thanks! :D
Machine: M-Series Auto
Mask: Headrest
No humidifier
On the hose since 2005.

gracie97
 
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Re: My Aura Adjustments

Postby gracie97 on Sun Jan 28, 2007 9:23 pm

The main problem I had originally was that it was unstable, as many others have mentioned. The wrong twist, turn, etc, would pop the pillows out and leaks galore. Most of this was fixed when I adjusted the horizontal adjustment as far in as it would go, but it still wasn't where I would have liked it to be.


Was amazed to read your comment above! My Aura clamps down very gently but firmly on my face and doesn't budge all night. Can't imagine how a pillow could pop out. Doubt it ever leaks.

In the picture of you in profile with your Aura, are you just holding the Aura to your face or is that the way your Aura actually fits? If it is the latter, I can see how it would be quite unstable as the interface isn't stabilized by laying against your face over most of its length.

With me, the shaft of the thing very lightly touches between my eyebrows (where it does double duty suppressing a frown line), then moves up vertically very close to my forehead (definitely not jutting forward away from my face). I have the top/horizontal adjustment at 1/2 way. The tubes rest firmly but comfortably most of the way down the sides of my nose and then flare out around my nostrils. (Have never bent the wires at all.)

(I do use the rubber band trick, perhaps unnecessarily. And have glued/stapled a bit of hooky velcro on the back band which is very marginally small enough for me -- have to cinch it down to less than an inch overlap -- so my head is only marginally big enough for the device.)

Having difficulty believing that you can't get a better fit, somehow, with the Aura. Maybe not, though. And that might explain why EVERY XPAPer is not using an Aura -- if it fit everybody like it does me, there would be no more discussion of which interfaces are best!

(I also live in Portland, Blarg.)

Grace

Started CPAP on 7/1/2005
Mild apnea
Plus upper airway resistance syndrome with severe alpha intrusion

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Linda3032
 
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Postby Linda3032 on Sun Jan 28, 2007 10:55 pm

Does it count if I used to live in Portland? :lol:

Blarg, how is the fleece kept on the pillows - velcro?

Grace, as to why it fits some and not others? I would say the shape of the face like, prominent forehead, big or small nose, high cheekbones, etc.

Or, that blarg is weird. Just joking, Blarg. I like you because you look like my nephew who lives in Vancouver across the river from you.

Ex-Oregonian.
Remstar Auto C-Flex set @ 7-7.5, Remstar Heated Humidifier set @ 1 or off.
AEIOmed HeadRest (formerly named Aura and TwilightNP) "de-cap-i-tated".
Aussie Heated Hose and 3 hose covers.
Compliant since April 2003

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blarg
 
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Re: My Aura Adjustments

Postby blarg on Mon Jan 29, 2007 2:10 am

gracie97 wrote:In the picture of you in profile with your Aura, are you just holding the Aura to your face or is that the way your Aura actually fits?


That's how it fits. Hence my feeling that letting it rest on my nose would increase its stability.

gracie97 wrote:With me, the shaft of the thing very lightly touches between my eyebrows (where it does double duty suppressing a frown line), then moves up vertically very close to my forehead (definitely not jutting forward away from my face). I have the top/horizontal adjustment at 1/2 way. The tubes rest firmly but comfortably most of the way down the sides of my nose and then flare out around my nostrils. (Have never bent the wires at all.)


The only things that touch are:
- The headgear
- The pillows
- And recently, my fleece pad.

gracie97 wrote:Having difficulty believing that you can't get a better fit, somehow, with the Aura.


Actually, now that it's resting on my nose, it's very comfortable, and according to Encore, pretty darn leak-proof. Better than any standard nasal mask by far. It's my favorite mask.

It's cool to see another Portlander on here! :-)


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blarg
 
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Postby blarg on Mon Jan 29, 2007 2:14 am

Linda3032 wrote:Blarg, how is the fleece kept on the pillows - velcro?


I'm a little daring. I just removed the pillows from the headgear, held the fleece in place and ran the whole bit through my sewing machine one side at a time. Of course I have a bit more sewing experience than most 23 year old males as well (and was shocked at the nice straight lines I got first try!), but I digress. It could be held on with velcro if you just felt the need to be able to remove it *chicken noises*, but I like not having any stiffness to it at the moment. It only touches my nose at the bridge, and only two small spots, so I'm sure I could fasten it on a different way.

Also, I should note that I did this with a new-style medium, meaning that the innards have hard plastic in them, providing more support than the old style just plain old tubes pillows. YMMV.

Linda3032 wrote:...that blarg is weird.


You must be talking to my mother. :lol:

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blarg
 
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Postby blarg on Mon Jan 29, 2007 2:41 am

CollegeGirl wrote:Any chance you could take a photo with the fleece cover off so that we can see what you're talking about a little better? Thanks! :D


I can't believe i missed this post. :shock:

No, the fleece cover is sewn on, so it's not going anywhere unless I get violent. Basically, twist and pull the nasal pillows off your mask. Pinch the bridge, hold up to your face, and then rock back until the plastic touches your nose. That's essentially what I'm doing, just with comfy fleece. Notice in the side view that I have the pillow wires curving so that it comes down and touches and then goes back to join its mask buddy.

With the pillows in, it's kind of like a sandwitch now. The points on the top keep the mask from sliding down and getting loose on the pillows, and the pillows, being more firm now, keep the mask from going anywhere else.

I didn't do anything special to the pillows other than bend them and sew some fleece on.


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Postby gracie97 on Mon Jan 29, 2007 4:00 am

Also, I should note that I did this with a new-style medium, meaning that the innards have hard plastic in them, providing more support than the old style just plain old tubes pillows. YMMV.


Oh no! The Aura has been changed and the pillows tubes are now hard inside? Cannot imagine that harder pillow tubes would feel comfortable at all with the way I wear the thing!

Do you happen to know if there is any way to still get the old style? I need another in case my current one gives out eventually.

Started CPAP on 7/1/2005
Mild apnea
Plus upper airway resistance syndrome with severe alpha intrusion

gracie97
 
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Postby gracie97 on Mon Jan 29, 2007 4:02 am

Also, I should note that I did this with a new-style medium, meaning that the innards have hard plastic in them, providing more support than the old style just plain old tubes pillows. YMMV.


Oh no! The Aura has been changed and the pillows tubes are now hard inside? Cannot imagine that harder pillow tubes would feel comfortable at all with the way I wear the thing!

Do you happen to know if there is still any way to get the old style? I need another in case my current one gives out eventually.

Started CPAP on 7/1/2005
Mild apnea
Plus upper airway resistance syndrome with severe alpha intrusion

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Postby Guest on Mon Jan 29, 2007 7:01 am

Nice job on the fleece'd tubes! That would certainly help with rainout.
I am curious as to why in the third picture it looks like the tube above the fleeced area is going out so far. Mine goes straight up, and I'm wondering if that may have something to do with the pillows popping out of your nose. Have you tried the rubber band fix? That would also make the tubes more stable and stay closer to your face without all the wire bending. Also the "tights" (thick pantohose leg) that I use over the front of the hose, tied at the back. I would certainly try adding the rubber band trick (looped around the tubes 1 on each side, and then they "catch" on top where there are 2 plastic "rectangle" bump-outs. The big hose run between them. This significantly tightened up the 2 small tubes close in to my face.
But the fleece is a wonderful thing, I've got to try that!


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Postby Linda3032 on Mon Jan 29, 2007 12:03 pm

Blarg, I just assumed the fleece was removable for cleaning. Are you making a fleece cover for all your pillows and plan on washing them with the fleece on? I guess that would work
Remstar Auto C-Flex set @ 7-7.5, Remstar Heated Humidifier set @ 1 or off.
AEIOmed HeadRest (formerly named Aura and TwilightNP) "de-cap-i-tated".
Aussie Heated Hose and 3 hose covers.
Compliant since April 2003

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birdshell
 
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Postby birdshell on Mon Jan 29, 2007 12:20 pm

Blarg, are you starting to decorate that Aura for the Animal Kingdom section of the Mask Decorating Contest?

And, may I say, that I have spent an amount of time trying to adjust my Aura and never have been able to get it to be comfortable. Hearing Rested Gal, College Girl and Linda3032 absolutely rave about their Aura/Twilight--I had to get one, but haven't deconstructed it as they have.

So, here is my question: Have you deconstructed any part of the Aura/Twilight, or did you make this work as its maker (sort of) intended? I was going to find/buy/borrow a hacksaw, but will try this first if you didn't deconstruct yours.

Bagpipes, creative, sews---Blarg, your mother must be extremely proud of you. Congratulations on the Lab Rat award. (Laura, I hope you have added that to your posting about the awards.)

Thanks, blarg.


Be kinder than necessary; everyone you meet is fighting some kind of battle.

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blarg
 
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Postby blarg on Tue Jan 30, 2007 3:55 am

gracie97 wrote:The Aura has been changed and the pillows tubes are now hard inside?


Yup. That's why I said there was a section "cut out" of them. They have hard plastic in the middle with little rectangular notches for the bridge of your nose, and then about halfway down the hard plastic ends. The pillows are closer together though. I'm guessing that's why they went to the "new style", and I'm also guessing that a new style is just an old style with an insert to bring the pillows closer together.

As for getting the old style, all I can really say is ask for it. I just did a pillow swap with another member of the forums and got an old style medium. (Yay, more to play with!)

Guest wrote:I am curious as to why in the third picture it looks like the tube above the fleeced area is going out so far.


I'll keep fiddling with it, but currently that's the most comfortable way to arrange everything. It's the furthest in horizontal notch I can stick the thing with right now.

Linda3032 wrote:Are you making a fleece cover for all your pillows and plan on washing them with the fleece on?


Yeah, I just wash them with the fleece on and everything's fine. :-) It's all dry by night time.

birdshell wrote:Have you deconstructed any part of the Aura/Twilight, or did you make this work as its maker (sort of) intended?


There's no deconstruction involved. I still may deconstruct my Aura, time will tell, but as for now, I just bent the wires and slapped some fleece on there. Given what you guys say about how yours works, I'm currently working on a way of shortening the upper headgear... We'll see.

birdshell wrote:Bagpipes, creative, sews---Blarg, your mother must be extremely proud of you.


I was a very busy child. :-)

Thanks for the congrats!


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Postby Lyza on Tue Jan 30, 2007 4:05 am

there is a different way to deconstruct the aura... no hacksaw required, only a pair of scissors.. all you have to do is cut the top horizontal bars and pull them straight out of the lock box... the tubing will disconnect from the exhaust area, pull tubing out of lockbox and reconnect... then u can also pull straight out the vertical bars as well if you want.

Thats how I did mine last week in about 10 mins with no problems at all..


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