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CPAP

Discussion in 'Alternative Therapies' started by xks201, Oct 31, 2012.

  1. xks201

    xks201 Senior Member

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    Anyone benefited from one for sleep apnea?
  2. ggingues

    ggingues $10 gift code at iHerb GAS343 of $40

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    Hampton, NH
    Yes, also had my Dr prescribe oxygen, due to low levels.

    GG
  3. AFCFS

    AFCFS Senior Member

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    I went through the two sleep studies early in the year. The first determined I had sleep apnea, the second determined that it was improved with the CPAP. Looking at the sleep tests, the results seem rather nebulous to me, in that I did not get much sleep, and it was not that good a sleep. So the test period may not have been the best for evaluation.

    I got the CPAP. They did not give me any other choice. I had to argue with the CPAP people to give me one that had the readings on it (e.g. API, leakage, sleep time, etc.).

    I used the nasal pillows as they told me I did not snore and was not a mouth breather. After using the nasal pillows, I started being a mouth breather, and would wake up with a dried tongue - so dry it felt like I had a stone in my mouth. What do you expect when you essentially have a reverse-vacuum cleaner blowing down your throat.

    Then tried the chin strap and that was ineffective. I tried to rig my own from a rubber tourniquet (wrapped around jaw and head) and that did not work - you will notice that it is easy to breathe through the mouth even with clenched teeth. I tried lanolin - yes, nipple cream - on the lips to try to effect a seal. My lips were smooth but the mouth still opened.

    Went to the full face mask. All my CPAP readings were fine, but in over three months felt no improvement. Sleep was uncomfortable. I felt either like a NAVY SEAL with the contraption on or that I was on an airplane going down with the oxygen masks dropped. Thank God I am not married or it would have scared the B'Jesus out of a wife.

    The sleep labs were about $1300 each. The CPAP was about $1700. Doctor's visits for the consult were about $300. The full face mask was about $250. These costs were adjusted down by insurance but still costly as I have a high deductible ($5000), which I eventually met.

    I was at my dentist for a regular checkup and saw they had the TAP-3 Elite dental appliance (hold jaw forward so it and tongue will not slide back for obstruction). I wanted to give it a try and did. It seems to works much better. The TAP-3 was about $800 and that included about 6+ (scheduled, then as needed) visits to make sure it was adjusted properly.

    The insurance did not want to pay for the TAP-3, not because already had the CPAP, but because they did not deem it a medical necessity (insurance, money, and medical politics IMO). They asked for confirmation from the dentist. He gave it to them. They delayed. I asked for another sleep test ($1300) to see if was working, to submit as medical evidence, so they would pay the $800 for the TAP-3.

    To bad for them, the deductible was met and now they have to pay 100% of the sleep study ($1300 vs just paying out the $800 for the TAP-3).

    The whole thing seems like a racket to me. This is not to discount the sleep apnea, just the medical-business that has crept up around it. I am still waiting for the 3rd sleep study to get back to my dentist and see if the TAP-3 works according to the test. If so, then can send it in as proof the TAP-3 works. The only negative to the TAP-3 was some transient TMJ as was going through adjustment. Still 100% better than CPAP IMO.

    Overall, would have rather taken CPAP and sleep study costs and gone on long vacation to Aruba. Am sure that is where my pulmonologist (the guy who evaluates the sleep studies) and CPAP rep will go with my money this winter. I envision them going there and meeting up, toasting their success at my expense.

    Not to labor on, but there may be a bright side to this. The sleep techs I spoke with got their credential from about three months at a community college and now make $20+/hr (12 hour shifts, 3 nights a week). Since I have not been working from CFS, and depressed economy in my area (the entire nation), thought maybe I could drag myself to class for 3 months or do a truncated course in 80 hours or so and then be able to get a job. Think I could do three nights a week. My sleep is good, but tends to shift to the day anyway.

    True, not likely enough $$$ to join the pulmonologist and CPAP rep for winter in Aruba, but more than I have now and the work even seems a bit interesting and relatively low on the stress scale.

    Am waiting for some more test results and to for some supplements to have full effect. I understand it takes time. Will see what happens.
    ggingues and merylg like this.
  4. xks201

    xks201 Senior Member

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    Lol that seems like it would be a good idea. 20$/hour aint bad. Sorry to hear the navy seal mask didn't work for you. I have a deviated septum and get allergies and sinus infections a lot (probably from too much dairy). I can barely breathe out of my nose when it gets bad during the day so I know at night I have to be having a hard time.
  5. AFCFS

    AFCFS Senior Member

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    I have heard that if this is bad enough they can do surgery on it - Repair of a Deviated Septum (Septoplasty) - Surgery Overview.

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