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Apnea and commuting
Apnea and commuting
Hello.   I was diagnosed with complex apnea a few weeks ago.  I'm STILL waiting for them to schedule my titration study and I can't seem to get anywhere.  In the meantime I'm still exhausted all the time and I have a 50-60 minute commute one way each day to work.  I'm taking a nap at lunch to help, but I'm just miserable.

Should I be driving like this while I'm not being treated?  I have had to go to my father's (who lives very close to where I work) and take a nap just to get home.  I haven't done this in a while, but its really wearing on me.  I'm trying to get them to expedite this, but I don't know what to do.  I have wondered about FMLA, but my doctors won't even fill out my documents in a timely manner.

Let me know what you think
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RE: Apnea and commuting
If you are concerned about it, that pretty much says it all. What we (forum) think is irrelevant. 

Driving these days is crazy enough, w/o having to worry about falling asleep at the wheel. You might bring all this to the attention of those who are scheduling titration the study. 

I'm over three years into my CPAP Therapy, and although I have no trouble at all staying awake, I still don't feel any better.
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RE: Apnea and commuting
That is exactly why I got Cpap over 25 years ago. I was on a trip taking students to an event and dozed off while driving. I woke up when I hit the rumble bars. Got a machine the next Monday. 

Please don’t drive like that, it is not only your life but the car or person you might hit!
Apnea (80-100%) 10 seconds, Hypopnea (50-80%) 10 seconds, Flow Limits (0-50%) not timed  Cervical Collar - Dealing w DME - Chart Organizing
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RE: Apnea and commuting
So, time for a joke --

Quote:When I dieI want to go peacefully like my Grandfather did, in his sleep - not screaming, like the passengers in his car.

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RE: Apnea and commuting
hehe the version I heard never specified the "car" bit so I always pictured "grandfather" to be a bus driver.

Seriously though, you're the only one who can assess that and it's probably something you should be doing on a case by case basis. If you are finding that staying awake during your commute is an effort, then I would say you probably shouldn't be driving. I've actually called in sick a number of times in the past year, simply because I was feeling so tired an hour after waking that I didn't trust myself to drive in that state.

- Neelix
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RE: Apnea and commuting
I pushed my luck quite a bit for many years. I didnt know wtf it was.. just always wiped out tired.
Did the usual, lots of coffee.. chocolate.. stop and walk around a bit.. freezing cold air.. impromptu naps.
Only drove off the road once, hit the top of a large culvert and landed in a wet field.  Got real lucky on that one, wrecked the truck but at least didnt end up upside down in the creek, and more importantly didnt hurt anyone else.

It's definitely playing with fire.
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RE: Apnea and commuting
@OP - Perhaps your Primary Care Doc can help if you tell him/her what your experience is. Emphasize that you feel unsafe driving and would have to cause an accident. Perhaps your Primary Care Doc can expedite things for you via doctor-to-doctor communication. Sometimes it works. Can't hurt to try.
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RE: Apnea and commuting
My Story
I didn't have a problem, I was driving off freeways at exits because I was driving to stay on the road. It was the rumble strips on the side of the city road that woke me up, rumble strips you ask, most know them as driveways, I was driving across driveways, and scared to admit it. 2nd sleep study, the titration study, and I woke at 5:30am actually feeling awake and refreshed, I was stunned! My DME told me 6-8 weeks to get a CPAP device and I said no way. I said find one elsewhere and I'll travel as far as it takes to get it. End result was about 1.5 weeks to get an appointment and the device, and I've never looked back. My Rx was CPAP at 18 cmH2O and I took to it like a duck to water. I was lucky, I was immediately feeling better. That was in 2003.  Note that allllllllllllllllllllis was before I even hadddddddddddddddddd inkling of the help here at AB.

Call your doctor ASAP  Ask him if you should get an APAP or a BiLevel. Call your Insurance ASAP and  Get a list of DMEs that are in network (read-cheaper for you). CALL all the DMEs and ask if they have a ResMed VAuto or a ResMed AutoSet available NOW.  We can help you set it up if needed.

Tell, not ask, your doc that you don't feel safe driving for an hour and can he help to expidite getting you an Auto machine in the next day and have it self titrate.  (reality is you don't NEED a titrion study).  Ask him for a generic script (7-20 EPR=2, fulltime) to get you 'auto-titrated.

I don't believe in auto-titration, but that and OSCAR will give yoou and us all the info we need to get you startted.

Via On-line vendors we can help you get a good machine within 2-days, most of which will be shipping.  I would submit the bill for this to your insurance for reimbursment.
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RE: Apnea and commuting
Thanks all! They are trying to expedite. I plan to stay home if I feel too tired. Thanks!
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