First, thank you to the board admin(s) for creating this place. I have been reading as much as possible and finding the info great.
It's all a bit overwhelming though, and I feel like I'm taking in so much data that I'm losing site of the big picture and finding it hard to create a strong plan of action to get my apnea under control.
I was diagnosed with sleep apnea in May this year. A physician I went to about feeling a "lump" in my throat took a look and suggested I get a sleep study. She used a skinny wire with a camera on it to look inside and said there appeared to be collapsing in my throat (anyone else experienced that feeling related to sleep apnea?).
So, she ordered a sleep study. My wonderful insurance company informed me I would have to pay out of pocket $2700 for the test since my yearly deductible is $3000. So, I started doing research and decided to take a home sleep study for $250. I figured it would at least be a screening and if it showed clearly I had sleep apnea I might take the step of a full blown study.
The home study gave me an AHI of 29, with both central and obstructive apneas. I went back to my physician with this report and she told me she felt like I had moderate-to-severe sleep apnea, noting that home sleep studies can miss sleep apnea, but rarely find it when it does not exist (anyone know if that is true?).
I went ahead and got the Resmed Auto 9 machine with nasal pillow. Initially I started getting more rest, only being able to keep it on for a few hours a night before ripping it off. I was having trouble with mouth breathing and with pressure being too high that I felt like I could not exhale.
I got a chin strap (which seems to work at keeping my mouth shut) and set the machine to an EPR level of 3 to give some relief on exhaling (any clue what the difference is between each of the level for EPR?). I also downloaded Rescan and Sleepyhead.
I have been testing settings (pressure included - basically limiting the highest pressure for the Auto set to around 10 cm) and looking at my data each day, but ultimately, I am feeling lost. I am having many apnea events (both Obstructive and Central) each night still, and I feel like there are so many variables to assess that I'm sort of spinning my wheels.
Could some of you experts give me some advice and tips on starting basically from scratch? What data should I focus on in the software? All the graphs and numbers are a bit much. Is there a way to expand the graphs so they are more easily viewed? Are there a few key ones to focus on each day? What stats are important to assess?
Again, thank you for this forums.