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Having a hard time figuring out travel CPAP options
#1
Having a hard time figuring out travel CPAP options
I'm having a devil of a time trying to figure out which travel machine I should look into. 

So far, I've excluded the airmini and the dreamstation go solely based off price. I plan on being out of the country on vacation for at least 2 weeks per year going forward, with a goal of 4 weeks per year. 

When I travel solo, I have no problem taking whichever machine and using it. My concern is with bed partners. I'd like to account for their comfort level regarding noise (and frankly, noise during sleeping is a pet peeve of mine, too). Neither one of us uses any ear plugs, and don't plan on doing so now. My most minimal concern is noise and length of the power cord if I'm forced to "slum it" in a hostel with dorm style sleeping.

I've also grown accustomed to the hose buddy, but will not be taking that along with me (nor the travel version), so the hose and mask situation have to be simplified, especially for travel purposes.

I think size and weight would be most important, then price. 

Right now, a major DME is having a 20% off sale, and it brings the cost of the Z2 HDM auto CPAP machine down from $589 to $471.20 for a new unit. 2 year warranty, which may be possibly extended to 3 years if I use my AMEX. Reviews state that this is still loud, even with the free included muffler and that your partner will hear the machine on exhale. 

I've looked into the Apex Medical XT Auto ($369) and Apex XT CPAP ($189), but they seem to be a little bit bulky? The Apex units don't have any humidification unless I buy the chamber, which I would not do for travel purposes. Reviews also say this is a bit loud? I think I do want PVA (which I understand it to be the EPR of my current airsense 10?). I think I have to pay a bit more for the Apex with the PVA option. 

I'm not sure which other models I should be considering. 

What do you guys suggest? 

And more importantly, how are you guys able to try these machines before buying? I know a few online vendors have a 30 day return guarantee, but having to buy, ship, return, etc, all seems like hassle.
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#2
RE: Having a hard time figuring out travel CPAP options
I recently bought a Devilbiss Sleepcube Auto and chose that particular machine because it can run happily off a cheap and compact 12v battery, perfect for camping and air travel. That wasn't to be its only role though, I wanted a new machine for daily use too.

It didn't work out because, despite the manufacturer claiming noise output exactly the same as my Resmed, it is very noticeably noisier. To make matters worse, the noise isn't constant motor or fan noise, which I could deal with (within reason) but alternating sounds of inspiration and exhalation - wheee, whooo ... wheee, whooo ... wheee, whooo

Drove me nuts and so the evil thing now sits in the wardrobe as my backup machine.
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#3
RE: Having a hard time figuring out travel CPAP options
Never heard of that machine, but with a name like that, I am not surprised that it did not work out LOL. The noise would drive me crazy!
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#4
RE: Having a hard time figuring out travel CPAP options
The big question here is what's your style of travel? Are you backpacking using hostels, hiking and camping out, caravan / RV, driving and hotels, cruise, packaged bus tour?

For all of these except hiking and camping out, I say to use your regular machine. You know it works for you, and there's no further expense. The Airsense, hose, mask, power brick etc all pack into a small and easily luggable travel case. I've used by S9 all around the world with no problems whatever.

When looking at some of the specialist "travel" CPAPs you need to consider that the machine itself is only part of the package. You still need to carry the hose and mask, probably a power brick (depending on model) external humidifier for some models etc etc. The total package may not end up very much smaller or lighter. Plus you then have to adapt to a machine which won't feel like your AutoSet.
DeepBreathing
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INFORMATION ON APNEA BOARD FORUMS OR ON APNEABOARD.COM SHOULD NOT BE CONSIDERED AS MEDICAL ADVICE. ALWAYS SEEK THE ADVICE OF A PHYSICIAN BEFORE SEEKING TREATMENT FOR MEDICAL CONDITIONS, INCLUDING SLEEP APNEA. INFORMATION POSTED ON THE APNEA BOARD WEB SITE AND FORUMS ARE PERSONAL OPINION ONLY AND NOT NECESSARILY A STATEMENT OF FACT.
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#5
RE: Having a hard time figuring out travel CPAP options
(04-18-2019, 07:35 PM)DeepBreathing Wrote: The big question here is what's your style of travel? Are you backpacking using hostels, hiking and camping out, caravan / RV, driving and hotels, cruise, packaged bus tour?

For all of these except hiking and camping out, I say to use your regular machine. You know it works for you, and there's no further expense. The Airsense, hose, mask, power brick etc all pack into a small and easily luggable travel case. I've used by S9 all around the world with no problems whatever.

When looking at some of the specialist "travel" CPAPs you need to consider that the machine itself is only part of the package. You still need to carry the hose and mask, probably a power brick (depending on model) external humidifier for some models etc etc. The total package may not end up very much smaller or lighter. Plus you then have to adapt to a machine which won't feel like your AutoSet.

These are good questions!

I do not backpack, but I might want to go out on a day hike or something (obviously returning to my home base at night). I prefer hotels/airbnbs. I may consider a hostel, but only if I can get some shred of privacy (like a "pod hotel" where you get your own closing door to your bed), but really would want to avoid multiple beds in the same room with other people. 

I wouldn't go camping, either. 

I don't think I would use it on a plane either. 

Good point about the additional stuff you have to lug around with a travel CPAP (e.g. the power brick), but I suppose I'd have to take that along with the resmed too. The only thing I can ditch is the humidifier unless I can find distilled water whereever it is I'm going. 

My concern with moving around with the resmed device is that the bag is somewhat large and when I have all the parts in it, may start to get a little heavy. I would usually have a small backpack (with laptop), and a carry-on bag (rolling bag), so all that extra weight may start to get to me especially due to feet issues. Not to mention a lot of places don't have elevators so you have to carry that stuff up lots of stairs! I had to climb like 5 stories each time to get to my airbnb recently. It was tough carrying my carry-on and backpack there up! 

Maybe I'll try a trip with just the resmed device, see how it goes, and if it's really difficult, may investigate a travel cpap.
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#6
RE: Having a hard time figuring out travel CPAP options
(04-18-2019, 06:50 PM)vroomvroom Wrote: Never heard of that machine, but with a name like that, I am not surprised that it did not work out LOL. The noise would drive me crazy!

That's odd. It's an American brand.
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#7
RE: Having a hard time figuring out travel CPAP options
"Maybe I'll try a trip with just the resmed device, see how it goes, and if it's really difficult, may investigate a travel cpap."

Good idea. Try leaving the humidifier behind, if that's how you think you will travel.
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#8
RE: Having a hard time figuring out travel CPAP options
The humidifier on an Airsense doesn't add anything much to the size or weight. You don't need distilled water - if the tap water is safe to drink just use that for the duration of your trip. If you're going to places where the tap water may be dodgy then use ordinary bottled water. eg on recent trips I've used tap water throughout Europe and in Singapore, bottled water in Myanmar, Laos, Bali and up-country Thailand. Never a problem.
DeepBreathing
Apnea Board Moderator
www.ApneaBoard.com


Bed

INFORMATION ON APNEA BOARD FORUMS OR ON APNEABOARD.COM SHOULD NOT BE CONSIDERED AS MEDICAL ADVICE. ALWAYS SEEK THE ADVICE OF A PHYSICIAN BEFORE SEEKING TREATMENT FOR MEDICAL CONDITIONS, INCLUDING SLEEP APNEA. INFORMATION POSTED ON THE APNEA BOARD WEB SITE AND FORUMS ARE PERSONAL OPINION ONLY AND NOT NECESSARILY A STATEMENT OF FACT.
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#9
RE: Having a hard time figuring out travel CPAP options
I just travel with my regular cpap, I slip the bag over the extended handle of my roller bag put on my backpack/laptop bag and it’s fine I do include a suitable extension cord in my bag as well as older hotels here in the UK often don’t have a power point by the bed it is across the room by the tv.
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#10
RE: Having a hard time figuring out travel CPAP options
Hi there,

I travel regularly all over the world and haven’t found a problem carrying my regular CPAP. If it’s business travel I just attach the regular travel bag to my suitcase then detach for the airplane. On planes I use my CPAP to be kind to my fellow travelers when sleeping. I carry a battery or use the plug on the plane if available. When I traveled light for a weekend trip from Singapore to Malaysia I wrapped my CPAP in the clothes in my backpack, so nothing extra to carry. 

I also camp, so I have the battery for backpacking or at an established campsite I book an RV site with electricity. I’ve also asked camping stores if I can charge the battery and they’re usually pretty nice about it. I have a transducer in my car so that I can plug in the battery for car rides as well. 

I do recommend extension cords for smaller hotels. 

Best of luck,

Darci
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