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Please, we need your advice!
Hi to all:

This is the first time that I registered in a forum related to health.
My wife was diagnosed with obstructive sleep apnea and the specialist did a very complete somnography in a sleep clinical laboratory and they find that her case is almost severe. While they deciding what treatment to follow, probably with a surgery, she need a monitor that detects this episodes of apnea and trigger an strong alarm, enough to wake it as we both have a very heavy sleep. I'm aware of the dangers posed by an apnea or several apneas at night and the surgery may take a delay of some months. The priority for us is the device with a strong alarm. Please, which monitor do you recommend? If possible, someone who is using it.

Your help is very important for us.

Thank you very much.
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Welcome!  I am not aware of any such machine.  I can't think of why they would make one.  Why get woken up when you can fix the problem with a CPAP machine and keep sleeping?

Why is her doctor considering surgery?  It does not have a very good rate of positive outcomes.  It usually does not entirely fix the problem and the result is only temporary is many (most?) cases.  Is her sleep doctor a surgeon?  They tend to prefer surgery to other treatments.

CPAP is the "gold standard" for treating sleep apnea.  For myself, I would only consider surgery if it make the CPAP treatment more effective, or if I was not able to tolerate CPAP.
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I had to have surgery before my cpap treatment would work because I had blockages from polyps in the nasal passages. Is this the problem your wife has, Josh?
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Hi Chill,
Thanks for your reply.

Yes, the "Continuous Positive Airway Pressure (CPAP)" was the first option, through health insurance, we rented a ResMed CPAP of last generation but she only tolerated it for one month. She can't use CPAP because it causes headache and a lot of discomfort to sleep. She had to suspend the use of the CPAP.
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Joshua, if her sleep apnea is "almost severe" it means she has close to 30 episodes per hour where she stops breathing for more than 10 seconds. If you get an alarm every time this happens neither of you would get any sleep. I don't know your wife's exact diagnosis, but it would be a good idea to get a regular CPAP or APAP machine that is data capable, so you can monitor what exactly is happening during her sleep.

Don' t fear, most of us here have similar or worse sleep apnea and it is successfully treated with a machine. While long term effects of sleep apnea are bad for your health, she is likely not in immediate life threatening danger. There is a post here (maybe someone could link to it) that describes what model machines are available and which ones are best. I would hope that in fact the CPAP treatment works and your wife will not need surgery. For this reason it may be a good thing that there is a waiting period.
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(02-25-2017, 11:12 PM)PollCat Wrote: I had to have surgery before my cpap treatment would work because I had blockages from polyps in the nasal passages.    Is this the problem your wife has, Josh?

Hi PollCat,
In a few days, she will be evaluated by an otolaryngologist to determine if it is a nose or throat problem.
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Ok, you posted while I was typing. CPAP or APAP is the standard treatment. It does take time to adjust though. There are few other options. My suggestion would be to try again and let the good folks here help here find the right pressure and mask. Maybe someone else has a better idea.
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Hi Russatrice,

Thank you for your good wishes.

Unfortunately, she can't use CPAP devices...

It's true, we're a little scared (I'm more scared than she) I don't worry if I have to wake up many times, for me, the important thing is to protect her.
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(02-25-2017, 11:37 PM)Joshua Miller Wrote: "Unfortunately, she can't use CPAP devices..."

Well, with respect and based on what you have said, you don't actually know that.  You only know that she failed to adapt the first time.

Unfortunately many who start CPAP get badly set and inappropriate machines, and virtually no support.  No wonder so many people fail at it!  This is not to blame you or your wife.  

Consider getting advice from this forum and taking charge (or your wife taking charge) of your therapy with help from the folks here.  With the right advice, the right machine and the right settings the chances are very good that your wife *can* learn to use CPAP (or APAP, BIPAP, or VPAP) successfully, and it is, right now, the gold standard treatment.

I'm betting your wife was just given a machine and mask already set and just told to use it, without any other support.  That's a recipe for failure, and all too common, alas. Give the good folks here a chance and she can very likely get proper treatment and add years to her life.
Ed Seedhouse

Part cow since February 2018.

Trust your mind less and your brain more.

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I agree with Ed.  A properly setup CPAP machine and a mask appropriate for the person should not causes headaches or a lot of discomfort to sleep.  Some people do struggle to adjust to having a mask on and the different feeling when breathing.  We can help with that, many of us have faced the same struggle.  We will be very happy to help your wife adjust a machine and get a mask that works for her.  Not all people are the same and not all masks are for all people.  
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