Another CPAP newbie here! Sorry in advance about the length of this post!
I've recently been diagnosed with idiopathic hypersomnia (somewhat similar to narcolepsy), along with sleep apnoea (hypoapnoea). It's been a long time getting to this point (as I'm sure it is for most of you!). I've always needed more sleep than most people, can easily sleep 12-14 hours per night etc, but was getting by. Then I had to give up caffeine (only drank like 2 cups a day) as I developed an intolerance to it (thought my life was over!!), and noticed my sleep got so much worse, felt like I was living in a daze the whole time. I could sleep for 18 hours and still wake up not feeling at all rested, and still needed to nap for around 4 hours every day. My psychiatrist (I suffer from depression), suggested I get a sleep study done as over 50% of people with depression have an undiagnosed sleep disorder.
So last December I went and saw a repository specialist (my husband has sleep apnoea and is on CPAP, so I saw his specialist), who sent me off for an overnight study. Showed I was having quite a few hypoapnoeas. I was getting my tonsils out anyway 2 months after that (chronic tonsillitis), so the specialist told me to wait to see if that helps. It got worse after that, so I did a CPAP trial for 2 months (even though the sleep apnoea is technically mild so most people wouldn't bother with CPAP, my sleep problems are really interfering with my quality of life. I can't splint as I grind my teeth at night and have bad TMJ pain)
Anyway, I used it for 2 months, building up to a pretty good compliance rate, but felt no difference. My husband has extremely severe sleep apnoea due to a small set back lower jaw, and the first night after using CPAP he felt like a new person. I had none of this, which was really disappointing.
I was going to give up and just accept this, but did some research on the internet and decided to try another specialist who is supposed to be the guru of sleep problems. Apparently a lot of people are undiagnosed as just having sleep apnoea when there are other problems going on also.
Anyway, did another overnight study, and a daytime study (multiple sleep latency test). It showed I was having hypoapnoeas (waking up 45 times an hour), and that I also have idiopathic hypersomnia (that was from the daytime sleep test). I'm about to start modafanil for the hypersomnia, and I also need to go on CPAP for the sleep apnoea.
I went and had another sleep study done for a titration study. It was really good, they tried 3 or 4 masks on me (and I had also tried some during my 2 month hire), and they woke me up a few times in the night to try different masks when there were leaks or I started to mouth breathe (and the chin strap didn't fix it). It was great they could do it in real time and watch what effect the masks etc were having on the pressure levels etc. They could also see what pressure I could go to before I started to hyperventilate and woke up ripping the mask off as I couldn't breathe (scary way to wake up!)
I saw the specialist last week, and got the prescription. Which is:
CPAP pressure: 11 cm h20
C-flex/Epr: optional (any setting)
Heated humidification: yes
Auto-titrating CPAP: no
bi-level pap: no
chin strap :optional
recommended mask: Redmed quattro air (small)
Anyway, I had some questions for you guys out there.
1) If you are prescribed and planning on using CPAP, do most of you buy the CPAP only machines (which between the Resmed s9 autoset and elite mean you save some $$), or did you buy the one with APAP function and use it on CPAP just in case?
2) I'm looking between the Resmed s9 (elite or autoset) and the Phillips-Respironics Remstar auto system one 60 series.
a) Can somebody please explain to me the difference between the different PR Remstar models – I honestly can’t work out what the difference is (other than some are CPAP and some are APAP). Some have c-flex, some have c+-flex, some have a-flex. I’m so confused!!!
b) Also, can anyone tell me what the difference is in features between the Resmed and the PR Remstar.
3) Does the Resmed have auto on/off (so that the machine sits in hibernate mode and when you put the mask on and start breathing, it starts pumping air)? Some websites say it does, and some they it doesn't.
4) My specialist said in terms of data recording the Resmed is the best, followed by the Respironics. Is that everybody's general consensus?
5) Can anyone share what else compelled them to go with 1 particular brand of machine? Which machine do people think is better between the Resmed and the PR Remstar?
Thanks in advance for your help!