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General Discussion on any topic relating to CPAP and/or Sleep Apnea.
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Grand-PAP
 
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FitLife Total Face Mask Review --AHH!

Postby Grand-PAP on Sat Sep 01, 2012 6:11 am

Grand-PAP wrote:
Ahhhhhh! FitLife Total Face Mask FINALLY!


First things first -- thanks to Sheriff Buford, purple and woodworkerjunkie for their valuable advice!

Second things second -- I think the FitLife has gotten a bum rap. Even Respironics advertises it as the, "'Problem solver' . . . a solution for patients who have difficulty wearing conventional masks." The design seems to have such natural benefits, I would have tried it earlier without that corporate caveat! Instead I waited until I had a reject pile of 8 to 10 masks and I experienced the normal nose bridge problems, irritated nares, pressure grooves, eye irritation, excessive leaks, etc. :x

I have used the FitLife for four nights and the mask was extremely comfortable.

However, the first night I had major problems with leakage.

purple wrote:Unfortunately, if there is any pressure on the mask, side to side, or up and down, or from the hose. Then the mask walks across one's face. And we get a leak.


Throughout the night I had major "mask walking" and major leaks. When I analzed my data the next morning, the leakage was well within the acceptable limits, but the noise from the leakage was very disruptive and I did not sleep well. My immediate conclusion was, "another item for the rejected mask heap". But, other than the noise, it eliminated all the irritations and I had excellent stats: AHI: 1.8, which consisted of only 8 hypopneas.

The second night was perfect!

woodworkerjunkie wrote:I was having trouble with it leaking at the center of my forehead and had to pull the straps real tight to get it to stop, so I bought a sweatband sold in the sporting goods at Walmart and placed that around my head and the top front of the mask, that way i don't have to over tighten the straps. Then I found the mask wants to walk on your face while your asleep.


I didn't have the opportunity to go out and buy a sweatband, so I modified WWJ's idea: I took an old chinstrap and wrapped it tightly around the mask. My wife stitched the two ends of the strap and I used gorilla tape to attach it to the upper face plate. It totally stabilized the mask without me having to use excessive tightening of the mask straps. I frequently turn from side to side and my ASV machine regularly increases the pressure to the 18 to 22 cm range; however, I was awakened only once during the night by leakage noise. I slept well and had excellent stats: AHI: .18, with only ONE hypopnea! PLUS, the stabilizing strap allowed me to use my Tempru-Pedic pillow and rest my mask on the pillow without leakage -- no need for the CPAP pillow.

Third night, ditto. My AHI was ZERO! The only issue was during the middle of the night, the "chinstrap" slipped on the top of my head. The leak noise woke me, but I placed the chinstrap again and went back to sleep.

Fourth night, AHI of .22, which consisted of TWO hypopneas - 8 hours and 7 mins of restful sleep with no awakenings!

Two final thoughts:

1. NOTE to current PR System One users: I have seen several threads in which users indicated that they had their "SYSTEM ONE resistance" set at X1. The elbow swivel tube on my mask is clearly marked: X2!

2. Pad-A-Cheek: Karen indicated that she does sell a liner as a Special Order. Because of the labor involved, she is in the process of raising the price from $20 to $25.

CONCLUSION: I realize that each of us is different, with different face structures and what works well for one my fail for another; however, IMHO, I feel the FitLife is an excellent mask and should NOT be considered a mask of "Last Resort." If you haven't tried it, I would strongly recommend that you do so.

Sleep Well!
Last edited by Grand-PAP on Mon Sep 03, 2012 5:38 am, edited 4 times in total.

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Sheriff Buford
 
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Re: FitLife Total Face Mask Review --AHH!

Postby Sheriff Buford on Sat Sep 01, 2012 8:04 am

I don't think the mask well ever get a "good reputation" here and I accept that. As all other masks for others, it works for me. My goal is to make people aware that it is an option.

Sheriff

_________________
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woodworkerjunkie
 
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Re: FitLife Total Face Mask Review --AHH!

Postby woodworkerjunkie on Sat Sep 01, 2012 9:52 am

Grand-PAP wrote:I didn't have the opportunity to go out and buy a sweatband, so I modified WWJ's idea: I took an old chinstrap and wrapped it tightly around the mask. My wife stitched the two ends of the strap and I used gorilla tape to attach it to the upper face plate. It totally stabilized the mask without me having to use excessive tightening of the mask straps. I frequently turn from side to side and my ASV machine regularly increases the pressure to the 18 to 22 cm range; however, I was awakened only once during the night by leakage noise. I slept well and had excellent stats: AHI: .18, with only ONE hypopnea! PLUS, the stabilizing strap allowed me to use my Tempru-Pedic pillow and rest my mask on the pillow without leakage -- no need for the CPAP pillow.


I'm glad to here that you found a way to make it work for you, that is what it all about, "making it work for you!" I think a lot of people give up to soon on a mask. They think because it doesn't work straight out of the box, then it won't ever work. Sometimes all that is needed is a couple of modifications. After all that is what hose covers, strap covers and mask liners are, is modifications to make the mask or air more comfortable and or stop leaks. People use products to help nasal pillows stick to their nose to stop leaks and keep them from falling out while sleeping. If they are having problems with the Fitlife they just need to think about what it would take to stop the leaks, or stop the irritation and look for ways to solve the problem, just like any other mask.

I agree with Sherrif that the FitLife Full face mask, is never going to receive the respect it is due, I think the size and shape of it scares people. And that others, are like above, it doesn't work perfect straight out of the package and give up on it, without giving it a chance or trying to solve the problem. I haven't found a mask yet, that was perfect for me straight out of the box. And, with every mask I've used, i find I have good nights and bad nights. For those that have found a mask that was perfect straight out of the box, I envy them!

Since I'm a mouth breather, I've tried several FFM, hybrids, and now the Total FM. Not interested in nasal, I know I wouldn't do well with taping my mouth, or chin straps. Most nights now, I use the FitLife, but I do on occasion switch to the hybrid for a break. But I don't ever see myself going back to a FFM, without kicking and screaming! :lol: Mask usage is as unique as cars, there are various choices, because not all people like the same things. And, due to face shapes not all mask will work for all people.

WWJ
Image Wish I had the energy!

49er
 
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Re: FitLife Total Face Mask Review --AHH!

Postby 49er on Sat Sep 01, 2012 10:01 am

I'm glad to here that you found a way to make it work for you, that is what it all about, "making it work for you!" I think a lot of people give up to soon on a mask. They think because it doesn't work straight out of the box, then it won't ever work. Sometimes all that is needed is a couple of modifications. After all that is what hose covers, strap covers and mask liners are, is modifications to make the mask or air more comfortable and or stop leaks. People use products to help nasal pillows stick to their nose to stop leaks and keep them from falling out while sleeping. If they are having problems with the Fitlife they just need to think about what it would take to stop the leaks, or stop the irritation and look for ways to solve the problem, just like any other mask.


I think a big hindrance is the 30 day return policy that many online vendors and DMEs have regarding masks. In my opinion, it simply isn't enough time to see if the mask could work with various modifications, particularly if the 1st one is unsuccessful. So people end up taking the safe route so they can get their money back vs. taking a risk in keeping a mask that may not work.

Of course, this is all assuming that someone has another mask they were using.

49er
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Stratman
 
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Re: FitLife Total Face Mask Review --AHH!

Postby Stratman on Sat Sep 01, 2012 11:58 am

This information is just at the right time for me.

I been considering getting one. I have been using a Quatro for over a year and another full face mask before that. I am a side sleeper and sometime mouth breather.

The Quatro is OK but a bit tricky getting it adjusted not to leak.
Tom...........

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woodworkerjunkie
 
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Re: FitLife Total Face Mask Review --AHH!

Postby woodworkerjunkie on Sat Sep 01, 2012 1:57 pm

Stratman wrote:This information is just at the right time for me.

I been considering getting one.


Do yourself a favor and send a PM to Grand-PAP above in the first post, you will be glad you did. But, do it quick!
Image Wish I had the energy!

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kerriberri
 
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Re: FitLife Total Face Mask Review --AHH!

Postby kerriberri on Sat Sep 01, 2012 4:46 pm

Grand-PAP wrote:
Grand-PAP wrote:
Ahhhhhh! FitLife Total Face Mask FINALLY!


First things first -- thanks to Sheriff Buford, purple and woodworkerjunkie for their valuable advice!

Second things second -- If you have given consideration to testing the FitLife, PM me immediately! I have some very valuable information that might motivate you to consider trying it NOW.



Thanks, Grand-PAP & everyone else on this thread for all the great info in your posts--very helpful!

I think you're right about people being intimidated by the look of the FitLife; hubby tried one that Sheriff Buford sent us, but it was just too small for his face lengthwise--eyebrows to chin--(who'd have thought that?)

DME's ordering him a TOTAL facemask (I call it the "Moonman" mask)-- http://www.cpap.com/productpage/total-f ... onics.html --it makes the FitLife look SLEEK! :lol:

We also ordered a padacheek from Karen for his Amara mask, which he really likes--but it chews up his nose bridge. We'll see what happens.

The FitLife really is something more people should try--I thought it looked like a brilliant CPAP solution for everyone that has nose/bridge issues with the full face masks and for those who just can't go the nasal pillow route. If I had to do CPAP, that would be my mask of choice, hands down.

Thanks again for all your detailed info; Google adds these posts to its search results, so you really don't know how many people you guys just helped!!!

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