I had an appointment with my doctor and will start therapy this week. He stated he wanted to see me in 6 months. That seems to be a long time for a follow up. Please advise
My follow up with the sleep lab is scheduled for 90 days after I started therapy but I have seen the DME clinician three times in the first month of usage. After the doctor interprets the titration study and prescribes the device, there's not much need for his or her involvement until the patient has some history on the machine. The early issues have been between me and the DME with a lot of help from this forum. They are mostly about getting the right mask and learning to use the equipment. Using an S9 AutoSet and SleepyHead to see my results, I was able to tweak the pressure settings myself. I'm expecting the doctor to look at my 90-day history and determine whether the therapy is effective and determine whether there are any other health issues.
If things are going well, a 90-day or six month follow up might be fine. If there's not? Well that's a long, long time to wait.
Here's what I'd suggest: Keep the current follow up appointment schedule and hope for the best. If you have no serious problems adjusting to PAP and your sleep is improving (or at least not getting any worse), there's really no harm in waiting that long for a follow-up.
If you have any problems adjusting to PAP, get on the phone right away and let the sleep doc's office know about them as soon as they develop and ask the receptionist to have a nurse, PA, or the doc call you back. If the problem does NOT go away or gets worse OR if you develop more adjustment issues, then continue calling the sleep doc's office and keep them posted; ask for a call back each time you call to report about the problem(s). If the problem(s) become severe---i.e. your daytime functioning is suffering OR the problems are so bad that you are seriously thinking of abandoning PAP, then insist to the receptionist who answers the phone that you really think you need to be seen and ask for a call back from the nurse, PA, or doc. And when speaking with the medical professional, tell them that you really think you need a face-to-face meeting to discuss how bad things are.
If you are unlucky enough to have serious adjustment problems that really need to be addressed on the doc's end, a series of phone calls to the sleep doc's office where you request call backs from the nurse, PA, or doctor each time will get you the attention you need from the sleep doc's office and they'll make an earlier follow-up appointment for you if the situation warrants it.