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General Discussion on any topic relating to CPAP and/or Sleep Apnea.
Air Force Officer
 
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Location: Oklahoma City, USA
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Newbie on Day 4 of my CPAP Odyssey

Postby Air Force Officer on Sun Apr 08, 2012 8:38 pm

Hello all....great to have found this forum. I am a 47 year old US Air Force officer, who will be retiring in July after 26 years of service. During the workup to my VA appointments, I was diagnosed with Severe OSA this past January. After a real headache with Tricare and finally getting my referral approved, finally got my CPAP 4 days ago.

Here are my vitals:

CPAP machine: Respironics Remstar Plus C-Flex
Nasal Mask: Resmed Mirage FX Wide
Distilled Water: Walmart Steam distilled - Bottled by premium waters, Ft Worth TX
I think my pressure is set at 6 (not sure what this means)
H2O Heat setting at 2

Progress so far: Finally made it through the night last night (night #4) wearing the mask the whole time. First 3 nights just could not get used to it, as I am a side sleeper and had leakage issues. Got it adjusted OK last night. I think I am feeling more rested already. I have my first follow up in 2 weeks. Will stay engaged on this forum. Thanks again...

_________________
Mask: Mirage™ FX Nasal CPAP Mask with Headgear
Humidifier: REMstar Heated Humidifier
Additional Comments: Pressure at 6 cm - Also using Boomerang Gel Strip and Fleece Strap Covers

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greatunclebill
 
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Re: Newbie on Day 4 of my CPAP Odyssey

Postby greatunclebill on Sun Apr 08, 2012 9:04 pm

thank you for your service. speaking from experience, when you do retire, do yourself a favor and choose a civilian primary care manager and get out of the military/va BS. copays are low. things are generally much much easier. i will never go to a military or va facility and i worked 20 years in usaf hospitals. most cpap's go from 4 - 20 cm/h20. the pressure is measured as the pressure required to lift a column of water 6 cm in your case. this is not very much pressure. stick with it & at that low pressure you should have no problems. i retired from the usaf 22 years ago and just last year started social security.

_________________
Machine: PR System One REMstar Auto CPAP Machine with A-Flex
Mask: Quattro™ FX Full Face CPAP Mask with Headgear
Humidifier: PR System One Heated Humidifier
Additional Comments: model 550P. sleephead & encorebasic software. cms-50D+. (2009) remstar plus m series model 200M. (2001) remstar plus domestic model 1005960.
please don't ask me to try nasal. i tried them all and none work due to my deviated septum that i'm unwilling to get operated on. i'm a full face person.

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MSgt USAF (E-7) Retired 1968-1990

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Pugsy
 
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Re: Newbie on Day 4 of my CPAP Odyssey

Postby Pugsy on Sun Apr 08, 2012 9:30 pm

Welcome to the forum and thank you for your service.

The setting of 6 on your machine is 6 cm pressure. Relatively low pressure since the machine won't go below 4 cm. Though it may feel like a lot of wind to start with it is rather mild compared to what other people might need. It is no reflection on the severity of your OSA...just means that you are lucky and you don't need high pressures to keep the airway open.

Is this the machine you have? The PR System One Remstar Plus CPAP with CFlex?
http://www.cpap.com/cpap-machine/respironics-pr-system-one-remstar-plus-cpap-cflex.html

You are going to see some discussion here about various software programs to use that lets us monitor our results. Your machine doesn't gather any data except hours of use. I don't know what you can do about it since you aren't using regular suppliers like we do. I just wanted to bring this to your attention.
The "Plus" is a good machine as far as treatment goes but you have zero way to evaluate anything except how you feel.
You might want to read up on full data machines vs machines that collect only hours of use.
http://maskarrayed.wordpress.com/

Data may not matter to you but if it does this machine won't give you any useful data at all.

_________________
Machine: PR System One REMStar 60 Series BiPAP Auto with Bi-Flex
Mask: TAP PAP Nasal Pillow CPAP Mask with Improved Stability Mouthpiece
Humidifier: PR System One 60 Series Heated Tube Humidifier with Heated Tube
Additional Comments: S9 Adapt SV being tried now...not available as menu choice
Last edited by Pugsy on Mon Apr 09, 2012 6:33 pm, edited 1 time in total.
SleepyHead download site
http://sleepfiles.com/SH/
Pugsy's Pointers Collection (has both software hints and data tutorial links)
http://www.cpaptalk.com/viewtopic/t8900 ... ction.html
Robysue's SH install
http://tinyurl.com/knaqaxh

burc2006
 
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Re: Newbie on Day 4 of my CPAP Odyssey

Postby burc2006 on Mon Apr 09, 2012 6:45 am

Hello,
Good luck on your CPAP therapy. I hope you will feel better as time passes.
I am also newbie, started using CPAP around 2 weeks, at 1st I was feeling no different, but since I started using it effectively, I feel better now.
However, I have still problems with my masks. One is Mirage FX, which is leaking at sidesleeping, and other is Activa LT mostly leaking from nose bridge.
How did you solve Mirage FX mask leak? By overtightening headgear or did you applied other solution?

_________________
Machine: S9 Elite™ CPAP Machine with EPR™
Mask: Mirage Activa™ LT Nasal CPAP Mask with Headgear
Additional Comments: ResScan 3.16 software

Mary Z
 
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Re: Newbie on Day 4 of my CPAP Odyssey

Postby Mary Z on Mon Apr 09, 2012 7:48 am

Air Force Officer, welcome to the forum. Sounds like you're doing great. Looking foward to following your progress- please keep us posted. Looking forward to hearing from you again.



burc2006, overtightening headgear is usually counter productive. I suggest using a mask liner or the old silicone seal. With the silicone you use Macks Silicone Ear Plugs- available in most drugstores. Take a few of the earplugs and roll them in the palms of your hands until soft. Then roll into a string about the diameter of a pencil and place around the perimeter of the mask. It may work if you just use it where it is leaking. I had good luck with this method. It's a little effort- because of the oil on your skin it needs to be replaced nightly. I would remove the silicone, roll it into a ball and put in an airtight container to reuse the next night. I also read of a new way to make a liner- take two liners and buy some thin cotton batting (or other material) and sew this between the two liners. This gives a bit more substance than the one thin liner, just be sure to buy the thinnest batting you can find. This would come from a fabric store and is used for quilting and such.
I tried using aquarium sealant (silicone) to make a bead around the perimeter of the mask where it meets the face. This might work, but I have shaky hands and was unable to make a nice even bead around the mask. If you try this use an old mask, though the aquarium sealant will pull off without problem. You could probably use any silicone sealant and a dispenser from the hardware store.
Good luck.

_________________
Mask: Wisp Nasal CPAP Mask with Headgear - Fit Pack
Humidifier: PR System One Heated Humidifier
Additional Comments: PR System One Remstar BiPap Auto AS Advanced.
Dog is my copilot

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GumbyCT
 
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Re: Newbie on Day 4 of my CPAP Odyssey

Postby GumbyCT on Mon Apr 09, 2012 1:27 pm

Welcome Sir! I have 33yrs in the barrel myself. The AF barrel that is. IF you have to go in the barrel it IS a better barrel :)

From this -
Air Force Officer wrote:After a real headache with Tricare and finally getting my referral approved, finally got my CPAP 4 days ago.
I would say you did NOT get your machine from the VA is that correct?

I am not gonna pretend the VA is a paradise but I thought they only used cpap's that provide data; Top Shelf. Be sure the model you listed above is exactly what IS written (word for word) across your machine. They ALL do look alike and it is not uncommon for people to get it rwong ;)

Getting CPAP equipment from the VA is probably one of THE best deals you will get for your service. IF you can't get a better machine from Tricare you will want to give the VA shot here. One way is have your doc write a machine make & model specific prescription with the words "Do NOT Substitute".

You can prob get this changed by your next visit. You cannot tell IF your mask leaking with the machine listed. This means you have no way of knowing IF your therapy is effective. Everyone leaks when we start out.

Another point of order, this sleep industry is FULL of people who will lie to your face and mislead you. You can find good sleep docs and DME's but you will have to hunt and be selective.

Lots of good info here at this forum but there is a steep learning curve. Everything you need to be successful is here.

I think it took me a month to be able to sleep thru the nite but my pressure was a straight 17cm too. Try to exhale against that ;) So you are doing good there :)

We can talk more about the VA later but let's get your equipment right.

Get your very own copy of the cpap AND mask prescription AND a detailed copy of your sleep study. You can get those either from the doc or the DME, they both have a copy.

You are in good hands with the people here.

Welcome to the best forum on the planet.

obtw - so we have some idea where on this plant are you read this from?

Good Luck
BeganCPAP31Jan2007;AHI<0.5
I have no doubt, how I sleep affects every waking moment.
I am making progress-NOW I remember that I can't remember
;)
If this isn’t rocket science why are there so many spaceshots?
Be your own healthcare advocate!

Air Force Officer
 
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Gender: Male

Re: Newbie on Day 4 of my CPAP Odyssey

Postby Air Force Officer on Mon Apr 09, 2012 7:39 pm

I would say you did NOT get your machine from the VA is that correct?


Yes - I have not retired yet - still on active duty. Official retirement date is July 1st. So along with the stress of finding a follow-on job, the severe OSA diagnosis was a surprise. I've been a light sleeper all my life but my wife reports not too much snoring. I got my machine from a TRICARE Prime referral. Did not know I could also go the VA route after retirement - will explore that.

Also I am awaiting my final VA disability rating - from all I have heard, it looks like severe OSA with CPAP is 50% disability to start with.

However, in addition to severe OSA I was diagnosed as having suffered a silent stroke sometime in my past (from a brain MRI I had for recurring dizziness). Been reading a lot about the link between OSA and silent strokes - really scary.

obtw - so we have some idea where on this plant are you read this from?


I am from Oklahoma, USA.

_________________
Mask: Mirage™ FX Nasal CPAP Mask with Headgear
Humidifier: REMstar Heated Humidifier
Additional Comments: Pressure at 6 cm - Also using Boomerang Gel Strip and Fleece Strap Covers

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GumbyCT
 
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Re: Newbie on Day 4 of my CPAP Odyssey

Postby GumbyCT on Mon Apr 09, 2012 8:15 pm

The VA doesn't move real fast. It took a month for me to get my machine. So practice with this machine and get the paperwork I mentioned above in hand BEFORE your see your VA Primary.

About 4yrs ago when I did, the VA sleep center had a 2yr backup for a sleep study. So you will want to have your records. Not only that their sleep lab was like camping out lol. You know how spoiled AF people are.

obtw - I did mean to ask where you were reading this from not your HOR. In case this means HOR
Air Force Officer wrote:I am from Oklahoma, USA.
BeganCPAP31Jan2007;AHI<0.5
I have no doubt, how I sleep affects every waking moment.
I am making progress-NOW I remember that I can't remember
;)
If this isn’t rocket science why are there so many spaceshots?
Be your own healthcare advocate!

Air Force Officer
 
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Joined: Sun Apr 08, 2012 8:26 pm
Location: Oklahoma City, USA
Gender: Male

Re: Newbie on Day 4 of my CPAP Odyssey

Postby Air Force Officer on Mon Apr 09, 2012 8:22 pm

GumbyCT wrote:obtw - I did mean to ask where you were reading this from not your HOR. In case this means HOR


Sorry - HOR is Pennsylvania. Now stationed in OK.....will retire and stay here (if of course I can find a job....may end up in a cardboard box in the parking lot....) :lol:

_________________
Mask: Mirage™ FX Nasal CPAP Mask with Headgear
Humidifier: REMstar Heated Humidifier
Additional Comments: Pressure at 6 cm - Also using Boomerang Gel Strip and Fleece Strap Covers

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GumbyCT
 
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Re: Newbie on Day 4 of my CPAP Odyssey

Postby GumbyCT on Mon Apr 09, 2012 8:38 pm

Air Force Officer wrote:Now stationed in OK.....will retire and stay here (if of course I can find a job....may end up in a cardboard box in the parking lot....)
lmao
awww come on now. You have something saved up right? AND a good woman?

It does take some getting used to but others before you have managed the transition. Plus today they have a lot more things in place for vets. I think it is a lot like the First Day of School. Some butterflies and nervousness is normal. It's fear of the unknown.

Maybe you should apply for a job with GSA? lol
BeganCPAP31Jan2007;AHI<0.5
I have no doubt, how I sleep affects every waking moment.
I am making progress-NOW I remember that I can't remember
;)
If this isn’t rocket science why are there so many spaceshots?
Be your own healthcare advocate!

Air Force Officer
 
Posts: 9
Joined: Sun Apr 08, 2012 8:26 pm
Location: Oklahoma City, USA
Gender: Male

Re: Newbie on Day 4 of my CPAP Odyssey

Postby Air Force Officer on Sat Apr 14, 2012 1:36 pm

On my second week using CPAP. Still very uncomfortable at night and I end up waking up several times....not due to to the air pressure, just the uncomfortable feeling of having this thing on my face. Not sure I will ever get used to it. 2 days this week I could not use CPAP due to nasal congestion (as I have severe allergies as well). Going in to the sleep center on the 19th for my first follow up - will be looking for other options if possible. I may end up being part of the 33% who give up on CPAP (saw that stat the other day).

_________________
Mask: Mirage™ FX Nasal CPAP Mask with Headgear
Humidifier: REMstar Heated Humidifier
Additional Comments: Pressure at 6 cm - Also using Boomerang Gel Strip and Fleece Strap Covers

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GumbyCT
 
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Re: Newbie on Day 4 of my CPAP Odyssey

Postby GumbyCT on Sat Apr 14, 2012 3:38 pm

Air Force Officer wrote:not due to to the air pressure, just the uncomfortable feeling of having this thing on my face. Not sure I will ever get used to it.
I felt the same way when I started. I don't think it is natural to sleep with a plastic thing on your face. Surprisingly enuff, today I can't fall to sleep w/o it.

The air pressure has always help open my sinuses when I get congested. Turning up the humidity helps but its the pressure after a few minutes that makes it work. OF course I am using nasal pillows too.

Just like learning to walk - persistence is the key.
BeganCPAP31Jan2007;AHI<0.5
I have no doubt, how I sleep affects every waking moment.
I am making progress-NOW I remember that I can't remember
;)
If this isn’t rocket science why are there so many spaceshots?
Be your own healthcare advocate!

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RandyJ
 
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Re: Newbie on Day 4 of my CPAP Odyssey

Postby RandyJ on Sat Apr 14, 2012 7:50 pm

Air Force Officer wrote:On my second week using CPAP. Still very uncomfortable at night and I end up waking up several times....not due to to the air pressure, just the uncomfortable feeling of having this thing on my face. Not sure I will ever get used to it. 2 days this week I could not use CPAP due to nasal congestion (as I have severe allergies as well). Going in to the sleep center on the 19th for my first follow up - will be looking for other options if possible. I may end up being part of the 33% who give up on CPAP (saw that stat the other day).



You may want to invest in a full face mask to wear when you're too congested to use the nasal mask. I have allergies and often am congested at night. I use a full face mask once or twice a week if I feel too blocked at bedtime.

Getting a full face mask may help with compliance. You really shouldn't even take a nap without masking up.

Good luck...

_________________
Machine: S9 VPAP™ Auto BiLevel Machine
Mask: Swift™ FX Nasal Pillow CPAP Mask with Headgear
Humidifier: S9™ Series H5i™ Heated Humidifier with Climate Control
Additional Comments: Backup & Travel Machines: PR System One Bipap Auto, S9 Autoset & S8 Elite, Oximeter CMS-50E
Diagnosed March 2011, using EPAP 10.6, max IPAP 18, PS 3
Alt masks Mirage FX nasal mask, Mirage Quattro full face mask

Squido
 

Re: Newbie on Day 4 of my CPAP Odyssey

Postby Squido on Sun Apr 15, 2012 9:50 am

I retired 1 April 2012. The VA will cover your CPAP supplies, once you have enrolled into the VA healthcare system. This is to be done approx 1 week after your official last day in the military, and has nothing to do with getting your disability rating. Call your local VA hospital about 1 month out, tell them you want to enroll in VA healthcare. Google 1010ez, it's the form you need. Make sure you bring ALL paperwork from your sleep studies.

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GumbyCT
 
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Re: Newbie on Day 4 of my CPAP Odyssey

Postby GumbyCT on Sun Apr 15, 2012 10:04 am

Squido wrote:I retired 1 April
I too retired on April 1st... so I would never, ever forget the day.
BeganCPAP31Jan2007;AHI<0.5
I have no doubt, how I sleep affects every waking moment.
I am making progress-NOW I remember that I can't remember
;)
If this isn’t rocket science why are there so many spaceshots?
Be your own healthcare advocate!

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