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Horrible sleep paralysis last night.
#1
After thinking I was on the mend last week (see my thread 'This VPAP Adapt…') with lowering pressures, I am now definitely in trouble. I had to stop using my machine 4 days ago when I woke up with terrible chest pains. In fact, I was worried I was having a heart attack. After 3 hours the pain went away, but scared me so much that I haven't yet gone back to the machine. I thought that I would wait for any trapped air to make its way out before starting up again.

Last night, still off the machine, I was lightly sleeping and had an episode of sleep paralysis. For those who don't know what that is, your body is completely paralyzed while awake, and there is no breathing. You are suffocating. Let me repeat, pure suffocation, where I felt every second of it. Absolutely terrifying. And to make it worse, I had just come out of one of my usual nightmares.

I haven't had an incident of sleep paralysis for 30 years. My machine gives me some sort of mild ventilation because of my centrals, so now I'm worried that maybe after 4 months of use that I've forgotten how to breathe on my own. I hope that's not the case.

I'm becoming depressed with all this, I have to admit. I'll try to find some way to see a doctor, which is not easy in Montreal being a non-resident and with the general shortage of doctors here.

I'm committed to making this work, but I'm feeling quite vulnerable right now, between that rock and a very hard place. And without the machine, I'm not sleeping at all well on top of everything else. I feel like I'm just dosing off and on, and the nights are endless again.

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#2
An ASV is a step or two down from a ventilator. You better use it.
You've not forgotten how to breathe... you were prescribed an ASV because your autonomic central ventilator drive is not normal.

If I may ask, why are you in Montreal? Excuse the question if the reason is personal.
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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#3
(10-09-2014, 07:29 PM)justMongo Wrote: An ASV is a step or two down from a ventilator. You better use it.
You've not forgotten how to breathe... you were prescribed an ASV because your autonomic central ventilator drive is not normal.
Yes, I know it's not a true ventilator, I'm just concerned that it's pushing air throughout my lungs more so than other XPAPs. So I don't know if it's dangerous or not. Can it collapse a healthy lung? Is air being trapped in the lining, inflaming it? The sleep paralysis after 30 years and after stopping the machine for a few days is too much of a coincidence.


(10-09-2014, 07:29 PM)justMongo Wrote: If I may ask, why are you in Montreal? Excuse the question if the reason is personal.
Not at all. My husband needed to move back here, his home, due to his mother having cancer. He's now a professor at one of the universities. I'm happy to be here since it's more like my home town of Portland, Oregon. And I needed to get out of the Arizona desert, which is quite the hotspot in more ways than one, although incredibly beautiful.
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#4
I think sleep paralysis, which is something everyone in REM sleep experiences, allows breathing, or none of us would have made it out of the caves.

But an episode of SP that you are aware of, that is never fun, and you may feel that you can't breathe, but you obviously can.

In my case it was due to the sheer terror associated with that. I used to have this happen once every 6 months of so. I am having a dream, and little things in the dream seem to stop working, like a light switch doesn't work, or an elevator opens but to a floor that is still under construction. At the moment I realize it is a dream, it is like I am falling down a rabbit hole, and the feeling is that if I do not struggle against it and wake up, that I will die. It's pretty frightening, and never pleasant. I've never had the nerve to just not struggle against it to see what happens. But it seems to have gone away for the last decade at least.

I also have an unusual reaction when I take ibuprofen (which I have done exactly twice, years apart) in that every time I end up with nightmares.

Other than those two things, my dreams are (thankfully) pretty unspectacular.
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#5
Greetings from another Pacific North West CPAPer;

I was just diagnosed in Aug 2014, my hubby was diagnosed in 2003.

Sleep paralysis sounds Horrid! But it has gotten me thinking - my hubby has been known to almost fall over while standing up and I am wondering if this is a type of apnea.
Evpraxia in the Pacific Northwest USA
Diagnosed: 44 AHI when supine, O2 down to 82%
Treated since 20 Sept 2014:: 0.7 AHI, Settings 7-15, EPR on Full Time at Level 3
Better living through CPAP/APAP machines!
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#6
(10-09-2014, 10:13 PM)Evpraxia Wrote: my hubby has been known to almost fall over while standing up and I am wondering if this is a type of apnea.

Sounds more like orthostatic hypotension.
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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#7
Did you look at the SleepyHead data for the time in question? It would be interesting to find out how long the "mechanical" part of the event lasted, and how much was perception.

Be sure to check it fairly soon before the high resolution airflow waveform gets deleted.

(Curse you, ResMed for your lousy data management.)

If it happens again, try to be calm (Yeah, I know, easy to say) and try consciously to slowly and gently breathe in and out. Sometimes when you can't catch a breath in, you will find you can squeeze a bit of air out if you try and exhale and then you can breathe in.
Get the free SleepyHead software here.
Useful links.
Click here for information on the main alternative to CPAP.
If it's midnight and a DME tells you it's dark outside, go and check it yourself.
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#8
No the Resmed Adapt isn't a true ventilator but what is does is gently give us a push of air when it recognizes we are having a Central Apnea, which in turn causes us to take a breath

I don't think even on its highest flow its not enough to cause a lung to collapse in a healthy lung. I would think it would cause a mask leak first, and there is no way air can get into the area around the lung unless there is a hole in the lung and you would feel pain and know that almost immediately if your lung collapsed. I have had one and they are very painful !!!.

What you described sounds very scary and its hard to understand unless it's happening or has happened to you.

Is there a chance you could return to the US and get in to see a doctor here across the border ?
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#9
(10-09-2014, 09:38 PM)TyroneShoes Wrote: I think sleep paralysis, which is something everyone in REM sleep experiences, allows breathing, or none of us would have made it out of the caves.

But an episode of SP that you are aware of, that is never fun, and you may feel that you can't breathe, but you obviously can.

In my case it was due to the sheer terror associated with that. I used to have this happen once every 6 months of so. I am having a dream, and little things in the dream seem to stop working, like a light switch doesn't work, or an elevator opens but to a floor that is still under construction. At the moment I realize it is a dream, it is like I am falling down a rabbit hole, and the feeling is that if I do not struggle against it and wake up, that I will die. It's pretty frightening, and never pleasant. I've never had the nerve to just not struggle against it to see what happens. But it seems to have gone away for the last decade at least.

I also have an unusual reaction when I take ibuprofen (which I have done exactly twice, years apart) in that every time I end up with nightmares.

Other than those two things, my dreams are (thankfully) pretty unspectacular.

In my episode of sleep paralysis I couldn't breathe in, so I was suffocating. But then, with my centrals, I'm doing the same thing. At least I do breathe at some point. And now we know that all those times of not breathing, for whatever reasons, adds up in damage. But to be awake when suffocating is not fun.

Your dreams sound awful, too, although it's interesting that your dream items stop working while your body is also not working. Pretty direct symbolism. Ever hear of 'Alice in wonderland syndrome'? I used to get that all the time. It was 'big and little' for me, 'rough and smooth' for my brother, 'near and far' for my son. It's on wikipedia. That was dreadful as well. These days for me it's mostly weekly nightmares.
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#10
(10-09-2014, 10:13 PM)Evpraxia Wrote: Greetings from another Pacific North West CPAPer;

I was just diagnosed in Aug 2014, my hubby was diagnosed in 2003.

Sleep paralysis sounds Horrid! But it has gotten me thinking - my hubby has been known to almost fall over while standing up and I am wondering if this is a type of apnea.

Hi, Evpraxia. Yes, I've been following your comments for awhile, and noticed your location. I miss Oregon!

I was just reading in wikipedia about sleep paralysis, then jumped to narcolepsy, which talked about the dizziness that comes with that, as well as signs of apnea. Might want to read about that.
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