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General Discussion on any topic relating to CPAP and/or Sleep Apnea.
jarablue
 
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Mask blowing air out of front vent holes?

Postby jarablue on Fri Mar 25, 2011 7:56 am

Hey everyone. The mask that I use now is a Fisher & Paykel Forma Full Face CPAP. For some reason I hadn't noticed this before but last night it seemed that the pressure was really low and I just noticed after cleaning my foam inserts that the mask is blowing air directly out of the front vent holes. I am wondering if I broke something on the mask or is air supposed to jet out of the vent holes consistently? It is just a constant stream of air. I really hadn't noticed this before.

Is this mask supposed to do this? Or did I break something? Like I said the only thing I did was remove the foam lining to clean it with some soap. And it could be me getting used to the machine but I swear the pressure blowing is lower than it was before. I turned the EPR from 3 to off.

Thanks again everyone! :)

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Pugsy
 
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Re: Mask blowing air out of front vent holes?

Postby Pugsy on Fri Mar 25, 2011 8:05 am

I would suspect that you just didn't notice the normal venting before. To have a continual air flow from the vent is part of the normal venting. Why does it now seem like over all air pressure is less? I think you are just becoming adjusted to the pressure. What originally feels like a gale becomes quite less as we become adjusted to it over time. This is why newbies often need ramp or some EPR but as time goes by ramp is not need and EPR can be decreased or turned off as they don't seem to be needed as much.
Also explains what feels so strong when we first mask up and turn on the machine and by morning we have to put our hands near the vent to confirm that the machine is still on.

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BlackSpinner
 
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Re: Mask blowing air out of front vent holes?

Postby BlackSpinner on Fri Mar 25, 2011 8:05 am

Yes it is supposed to do that, it is venting out the CO2 that you breath out. This venting has been calculated into the pressure/leak rate.

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Otter
 
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Re: Mask blowing air out of front vent holes?

Postby Otter on Fri Mar 25, 2011 8:13 am

This sounds like what happened to my mother's mask last year. I think it was a Fisher & Paykel Flex Fit. There was a fancy little valve gizmo in the vent, and it gave out.... or maybe a new mask was DOA. Sorry I can't remember the details very well. But if that's what happened to your mask, I don't really see how you could break it without trying. The fiddly bits are fairly well protected. Sometimes delicate moving parts just break.

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Otter
 
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Re: Mask blowing air out of front vent holes?

Postby Otter on Fri Mar 25, 2011 8:17 am

OTOH, her mask didn't hold pressure at all after that. It was useless. So maybe you are just getting used to the pressure.

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jarablue
 
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Re: Mask blowing air out of front vent holes?

Postby jarablue on Fri Mar 25, 2011 8:20 am

Otter wrote:This sounds like what happened to my mother's mask last year. I think it was a Fisher & Paykel Flex Fit. There was a fancy little valve gizmo in the vent, and it gave out.... or maybe a new mask was DOA. Sorry I can't remember the details very well. But if that's what happened to your mask, I don't really see how you could break it without trying. The fiddly bits are fairly well protected. Sometimes delicate moving parts just break.


Crap I hope it didn't give out. The mask is new. Anyway to test for sure?

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LinkC
 
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Re: Mask blowing air out of front vent holes?

Postby LinkC on Fri Mar 25, 2011 10:01 am

I think y'all are talking about two different things. The "vent" is a series of tiny holes that constantly blow air. That's what VENTS the CO2. There is nothing to test. It's just holes. Any time the machine is on there will be air exiting.

The "valve" is the anti-asphyxiation valve which is closed when there is pressure inside the mask, but opens to allow breathing if your machine stops. You can test the valve operation. With the mask on and the machine running, hold your finger over the outlet port while exhaling. Then remove your finger (still exhaling) and you should hear (and possibly feel) the valve "thunk" closed. During normal operation, you should not hear or feel air escaping from this valve. If you do, you can "reseat" the valve flapper by performing the test. If that doesn't fix it, you have a bad valve. It looks like the valve on the F&P masks may be difficult to block off as the outlet encircles the lower part of the hose elbow. You may have to use a number of fingers and thumbs to test it. If you can't feel air coming out (normal conditions) it's working.

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beyondtired
 
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Re: Mask blowing air out of front vent holes?

Postby beyondtired on Fri Mar 25, 2011 11:49 am

I don't want to hijack the thread, but my question is about the mask vent also. I'm currently using a Mirage Softgel mask, and when I sleep on my sides, I'm worried about the vent holes in the elbow of the mask getting blocked up some by the pillow. Or when I have the covers over my head, I'm worried that they could block up the vent holes too. Could that be a big problem concerning leaks if the vent gets blocked?

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Otter
 
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Re: Mask blowing air out of front vent holes?

Postby Otter on Fri Mar 25, 2011 1:03 pm

LinkC wrote:I think y'all are talking about two different things. The "vent" is a series of tiny holes that constantly blow air. That's what VENTS the CO2. There is nothing to test. It's just holes. Any time the machine is on there will be air exiting.

You are absolutely right. I was thinking of the valve, not the vent holes. I didn't know its purpose as my mother manages her own equipment. But if anything breaks in her house, she gives it to me to see if i can fix it.

"Low pressure" and "blowing air directly out the front" sounds like a balky AA valve to me, but I hope either I'm wrong or, following your instructions, Jara can get it to work again.

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jarablue
 
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Re: Mask blowing air out of front vent holes?

Postby jarablue on Fri Mar 25, 2011 3:51 pm

Ok I think something happened. The pressure seems way to low. I know this, if I exhale out of my nose hard the thunk happens air is escaping. It doesn't stop the air from escaping at all, I can hear the air coming out.

Do I have to reseat the valve somehow? I hope my mask didn't break.

Thank so much for the help. :)

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LinkC
 
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Re: Mask blowing air out of front vent holes?

Postby LinkC on Fri Mar 25, 2011 4:04 pm

Doesn't sound good... If you have reseated the valve and it STILL leaks, the valve has probably gone bad. As a last resort, I'd flush water thru the elbow and valve, just to be sure there isn't some debris holding it open. If that doesn't help, I don't know of any other options than a new mask. (Keep in mind, I have ZERO experience with F&P masks...beyond looking at the photos on their site.) Maybe an F&P user has better advice. Wish I could offer a fix...

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Otter
 
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Re: Mask blowing air out of front vent holes?

Postby Otter on Fri Mar 25, 2011 4:40 pm

It occurred to me this afternoon that I did know what the valve on my mom's mask was for when I was trying to fix it. I read it in the directions on how to reseat it. We did pretty much what LinkC said to do, and it didn't work.

I'm a pretty good tinker, but the conclusion I came to is that it would be very difficult to fix, and given it's purpose, I didn't want to mess with it. Having that valve stick open is one thing, but you don't want it to stick closed. Definitely not the place for bailing wire, duct tape, and plumber's epoxy putty.

Of course, you've got a different model and I may have missed something. I am definitely not remembering clearly.

Even if it's not under warranty, it wouldn't surprise me too much if you could get it replaced for free. "I had one of those but the anti-asphyxiation valve went bad," doesn't sound like something FP's marketing dept. wants to read on the internet.

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LinkC
 
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Re: Mask blowing air out of front vent holes?

Postby LinkC on Fri Mar 25, 2011 4:42 pm

That's a very good point...especially concerning a safety feature! Certainly worth a call the FP Customer Service! Keep us posted...

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The OSA patient died quietly in his sleep.
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