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02-09-2014, 08:39 AM
I'm new to CPAP, just into my third week. I'm wondering why my AHI varies so much. Some nights it's .2 and others, like last night 2.1.
02-09-2014, 08:43 AM
Totally normal. Be happy, as the 'goal' is to try to stay below '5.0'. I'm usually between 5.0-10.0.
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02-09-2014, 09:28 AM
02-09-2014, 11:10 AM
WELCOME! to the forum.!
Your numbers are great as they are below 5 which is where they should be, sounds like you are off to a GREAT start, keep up the good work.
Hang in there for more responses to your post and best of luck to you with your CPAP therapy.
02-09-2014, 11:42 AM
I've wondered about that as well. My numbers are similar to yours.
Most nights are under 1.0. Then I have a couple days over 3.0.
The majority under 5.0. Then perhaps once a month or less I'll have
an 8.0 or 10.0 for no reason I can find other than on those really
bad nights I have increased mask leaks.
02-09-2014, 12:31 PM
It's normal for the AHI to fluctuate, especially when you're new to CPAP therapy.
I liken it to measuring the humidity in the air. The measurement is no where near as precise as the measurement of the temperature of the air. That is to say, if you measure the temperature of the air in a room ten times, you might get numbers that vary by less than a degree. If you measure the humidity ten times you may get numbers that vary by as much as 5%.
Many people who are new to the measuring of the humidity are surprised by this.
The same is true of measurements of the AHI.
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02-09-2014, 12:48 PM
(02-09-2014, 08:39 AM)Sandra_ON Wrote: I'm new to CPAP, just into my third week. I'm wondering why my AHI varies so much. Some nights it's .2 and others, like last night 2.1.AHI at or below 5 is normal, I would not pay much attention to AHI at this stage of therapy. how you feel is important as well as, finding a comfortable mask, getting decent sleep, customize the machine to your preference (humidity, ramp, epr), and of course leak number
btw, user profile shows "CPAP Pressure: 3.5" ... 4 is the lowest setting
02-09-2014, 02:59 PM
+1 to all the other answers, you have great numbers.
But here are some reasons for variations:
If you lie awake a long time without sleeping your machine is likely to mark some events that were NOT apneas and that happened while you were awake so these (and the time) would not really count. Much of the time my apneas are MUCH more heavily present in the "awake" periods falling asleep, or when awakening and trying to "stay in bed" hoping to go back to sleep.
Congestion: can play a big role.
Body position: Generally most people have more apneas (>AHI) sleeping on their back than on their side.
Humidity and corresponding machine settings
Your mask -- changing masks, especially the TYPE of mask might cause small variations
Excessive leak -- contrary to what many of us think at first, SOME LEAK is both expected and even a DESIGN feature of the CPAP masks (if it doesn't leak you can't really exhale and purge the CO2) but leak that overwhelms your machines ability to deliver rated pressure is very likely to change your numbers. That is a LOT of leak but it's possible.
All the other things you are supposed to do to take care of yourself, e.g., alcohol consumption or some drugs and medicines can alter your breathing and thus your AHI.
There are more, but these are some things that can alter the AHI.
You might consider keeping a sleep log and adding your daily activities that affect sleep and breathing.
But note again, 0 to 4.9 is good even if it is more fun to be "close to 0".
Sleep study AHI: 49 RDI: 60 -- APAP 10-11 w/AHI: 1.5 avg for 7-days (up due likely to hip replacement recovery)
"We can all breathe together or we will all suffocate alone."
02-09-2014, 03:01 PM
Welcome Sandra _ON, what you want to compare it to is what your AHI was at your first sleep study for example if you have servere sleep apnea with an AHI of over 30 per hour, you are down to one or two per hour. Lots of things effect our AHI even when you have been on CPAP for a long time, weather, medication, what we eat, etc, etc, etc. Every night is a different night so it will never be the same, good luck.
02-09-2014, 04:35 PM
My AHI in my sleep study was 9 so my apnea is fairly mild. I'm having problems with mouth breathing. Sometimes my chin strap works, sometimes not but I do like the pillow mask. I'm not sure what the respiratory therapist will recommend for a mask when I see him next week. I really don't like the idea of a full face mask.