Newbie intro - software problems
The sleep clinic gave me some paper about 'sleepmapper.com' so I made an account but it didn't have nay data via the satellite modem, or however that little antenna connects (cellular 4G??). They sure didn't know. So I installed sleppmapper on my PC, popped the modem off and popped the SD into the USB adapter, and it said that it downloaded. But, on the sleepmapper site it still says "no data" so the heck with that I need my own software, and tomorrow I'll look around for some.
They diagnosed "severe" apnea. Probably undiagnosed for 30 years, until I started actually suffering sudden unconsciousness during the day at work.
The place that did the sleep study seems too tied into profits on the machines. There needs to be some separation there.
At least they gave me a decent bipap machine, which IMHO sure beats a CPAP. Why would anyone want a CPAP when these are available? And heck, they should be about $150, not ten or twenty times that! Get real!
My treatment story:
After 5 years without health insurance, I got a better job with insurance, and found a local family practice, and tried to make an appointment outside work hours. Got a "physician's assistant" who wrote down "old guy often feels sleepy" when I described "sudden unconsciousness while driving and at work." They, and nurse practitioners, are wonderful for 90% of common treatments, but need to stay out of the diagnosis arena they are not qualified for IMHO. So after I'm in trouble at work and trying to hold onto my new wonderful job I moved across the country for, I went back to the doctor's office and insisted I get seen...taking names. So it turns out they DO have a doctor on-staff on-site outside of work hours, it's just a secret unless you make a fuss. So he gives me some great "awareness" meds and a doctor's note for work and a prescription for a sleep study.
So the sleep study says I have severe apnea, 70+ apnea events an hour. That seems more than possible??? The masks in the study seem absolutely unbearable torture, and I consider whether death is looking more attractive.
So they can't control it with a CPAP. They go to BiPAP. I hate that I can't do anything while falling asleep with the huge mask on, can't enjoy music or see TV or the computer. This really sucks.
Then my personal machine comes in. I can't stand the big mask on my nose, they hurt an leak. Worse yet they feel like I'm re-breathing the air I just exhaled, and I need to breathe deeper just to get any air. So I chose a really small rig with little cushions that try to seal against your nostrils. If I open my mouth at all, my ears pop painfully. I can't exhale quickly, as the mask only passes a small amount of air.
I get home and try it the first nights. I have severe hay fever. I under go a long ritual to get my sinuses reasonably clear. As soon as I start using the BiPAP it's ticking the hair in my nose, the 'cushions' don't flow sufficient air, and I can't exhale quickly, only slowly. I sneeze and it's a mess. I cough and my ear drums pop. If I open my jaw, not even opening my mouth, and it pops my ears painfully. The next 3 days my right ear hurts, and there's a constant ringing in my ears. I turned down the humidifier to "2" so I wasn't always drowning in stuff dripping right at my nose.
Then it seemed to be working well for a night.
Then I woke up and it felt like somebody punched me in the nose and broke my nose. The nose and facial bones on my left side were in extreme pain. And...from the moment I woke up, that area seemed extremely COLD!
So I went to the family care place and got to see another doctor. She did nothing.
So Saturday I went back and said it was an emergency, because I needed to use the bipap and anything that interfered was serious.
The bipap changes pressure against the sinus tissues. It kind of squeezes them out like a sponge. Which is kind of cool, in that over the course of the night it really clears out your sinuses! But... it seemed to wring mine out too hard and caused injury. Very little blood though, mostly really thin water dripping from my nose for the next 2 or 3 days. That's my opinion, that this was caused by my allergies and the BiPAP. Doctor thought it was an infection. Well, they didn't do anything for my obvious ear infection but offered me antibiotics for my sinus allergies. They suggested I review the pressures with my other "sleep" doctor, so we might minimize these...problems or injuries or side effects.
I tried to see the "sleep" doctor associated with the sleep study place, and it was pretty much impossible, and then she's going on vacation so of course the doctor covering for her is booked.
I gave up, hacked the unit, and found out it's only 8 / 16. So I changed it to 8 / 15 and tonight I'll see how it does. Wish me luck.