I'm a newbie here and to CPAP -- APAP now because my first doctor prescribed a 14.6 CPAP with full-face mask, and I did not have full confidence in this person so I went to another sleep lab with a much better reputation (deservedly so, as I have concluded), where I was prescribed for a 6-15 APAP machine (Weinmann SomnoBalance) with nose mask. I'm about 2 weeks into it now, and have been trying to get answers to several questions. I have tried calling the companies, but that doesn't help much because you don't get to talk to the experts, and you can't rely on their objectivity, either. Of course I will ask my doctor (the second one!), but I want to inform myself first. I hope someone can help.
I have read through a number of the threads here, about self-tritration and so on, and may have missed the ones discussing my question, but maybe someone can link me directly.
Does either one of these machines react to nasal blockage (as with a cold)? The Weinmann person I talked to said theirs does not, the ResMed people said theirs does. It seems to make sense that more pressure would help with nasal blockage, but does it? Or does the pressure actually make it worse? With the Weinmann, the last couple of nights I have woken up with my mouth open and my nose more stuffy than it was when I went to sleep. Opening the window and cool air often helps to clear the nose, otherwise the only alternative I guess is nose sprays and, if that doesn't work, a full-face mask so I can breathe through my mouth. I want to avoid that if possible, and with the nose mask it seems to be impossible to breathe in through the mouth, although you can exhale more quickly through the mouth (losing the benefit of the pressure, I guess, although it continues to blow), and I suspect that is why the mouth pops open, in an effort to get more air. I have tried lying awake with the mask and machine on and breathing through a stuffy nose, but the pressure doesn't go up with the Weinmann. I am wondering if the ResMed AutoSet does, and if that helps to clear the nose. Nasal blockage would be included in the measurements of "air flow," wouldn't it (though apparently not with Weinmann)?
2. I also read something here about ResMed not reacting to hypopneas, i.e. not breathing at all, with pressure over 10. Is this still true of the S9? I don't understand this. I have tried holding my breath with the mask on, after inhaling and after exhaling, for more than 10 seconds in each case (hoping the pressure would increase and help clear my nose), but the Weinmann does seem to react to this. This function -- forcing you to take a breath -- is more a central apnea problem and requires a different machine altogether, doesn't it? I believe both ResMed and Weinmann say that their machines do distinguish between obstructive and central apnea, but exactly how they react is not clear to me. I believe I have only chronic obstructive apnea, and as I understand it everyone has some "central apnea," (i.e., breath pauses) and overreacting to them can be harmful and actually cause more problems (more breath pauses).
By the way, I live in Germany.