Asthma and sleep apnea

General Discussion on any topic relating to CPAP and/or Sleep Apnea.
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Asthma and sleep apnea

Post by Chalkie » Sat Feb 10, 2018 1:19 pm

I use BiPAP and have complex sleep apnea. I am starting to suspect I also have asthma.

My doctor gave me a very low-tech device( I think it's called a spirometer) to blow into. It was literally a plastic tube. I bashed the gauge up to or very near the end every time.

However, I did not feel breathless at the time. I got very breathless and felt a bit faint. I was at a football game and I think the damp cold triggered me, plus maybe the stress of the game. Cold and pollution have triggered attacks in the past.

I am going back to my doctor next week to discuss this. Something is causing these attacks.

If asthma is diagnosed, what are the implications for sleep apnoea and my BiPAP treatment?
Machine: Philips Respironics BiPAP S/T C Series INTL 30. Ref: 10611. Has humidifier option but do not use it.
Mask: Respironics Confort Gel Nasal Mask.

rick blaine
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Re: Asthma and sleep apnea

Post by rick blaine » Sat Feb 10, 2018 1:27 pm

The low-tech plastic device is called a Wright Peak Flow meter. It measures FEV or Forced Expiratory Volume. Its scale is in centilitres - ie, 600 on the dial means you can process 6 litres of air per minute.

The idea behind giving patients one to take away from the surgery is so they can keep a 'breathing level' diary. You use it in the morning when you get up, and write that down. Then you use again at mid-day, and write that down. And so on.

Especially use it in those times when you experience breathing difficulty or when your 'asthma' flares up - ie, in the cold, or when encountering pollution or triggering substances, such as animal hair and dust.

Doctors compare your results with the 'normal' number for your height and age. There's a chart for it on the internet. And they tend to take notice if you are routinely below 80 per cent of that. Hence, the usefulness of the diary. Your doctor wants to know what happens routinely.

The first line of treatment is with inhaled steroids. If asthma is under control following treatment, there shouldn't be any effect on CPAP or BiPAP use.

Mask: Mirage Quattro™ Full Face CPAP Mask with Headgear
Humidifier: 60 Series Heated Humidifier (Non-Heated Tube)
Additional Comments: PR System One 561 Auto

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Re: Asthma and sleep apnea

Post by Mikebear » Sat Feb 10, 2018 2:34 pm

Do some research on "exertional dyspnea". I have it, and it can be quite scary. It can be a sign of asthma, but could be caused by other things. I just lost almost 20lbs so far, and it's helped a LOT as most of my weight is carried in my gut. I also have asthma and use two different kinds of inhalers: Albuterol (rescue inhaler) and Qvar (steroid inhaler)

I've also been on cpap for over 20 years, and it makes no difference to my asthma or COPD (chronic bronchitis). In fact, cpap therapy actually HELPS with both. I'm now trying to get used to a brand new cpap machine (Resmed Airsense 10 autoset) and it still doesn't cause any bad issues with either though I have some way to go before I'm really adapted to it, as it's so different than my old brick cpap.

Machine: AirSense™ 10 AutoSet™ CPAP Machine with HumidAir™ Heated Humidifier
Mask: AirFit™ P10 Nasal Pillow CPAP Mask with Headgear
Additional Comments: Pressures = 9-12 EPR 3. COPD, Asthma, 30lbs overweight. Airsense 10 AutoSet

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Re: Asthma and sleep apnea

Post by ajack » Sat Feb 10, 2018 2:48 pm

The doctor has probably set your machine up for an obstructed lung already, but you could ask if he has reduced the ramp time, to breathe in quicker, to give the slower breathing out time. resmed would be 150 and respironics would be 1. You would also have high cycle.
What PS or difference between epap and ipap, are you using?

starts at page 21 ... -Titration

Mask: AirFit™ F20 Full Face CPAP Mask with Headgear
Humidifier: S9™ Series H5i™ Heated Humidifier with Climate Control
Additional Comments: S9 ST-A iVAPS and adapt ASV

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Re: Asthma and sleep apnea

Post by Chalkie » Sun Feb 11, 2018 7:54 am

Thanks for the replies.

I have done a bit of research on exertional dyspnea. I do not believe I have it - my attacks are more related to environmental triggers.

I am not sure what pressures are as my machine settings are locked by the sleep nurse at the NHS hospital.

I think the next step for me, CPAP-wise, is to use Sleepyhead and upload some stats to get some feedback. According to the consultant I see annually, my sleep apnoea is "well controlled" with an AHI under 5. Philips Respironics recall my data card periodically and send the consultant the results.

"Asthma"-wise, I think the next step is to go back to the doctor and ask for further tests, and maybe an inhaler.
Machine: Philips Respironics BiPAP S/T C Series INTL 30. Ref: 10611. Has humidifier option but do not use it.
Mask: Respironics Confort Gel Nasal Mask.