Welcome to the forum.
(11-16-2013 02:51 PM)sir_sleeps_alot Wrote: It seems like the pressure coming through the mask varied at times throughout the night. At different points, I could barely feel any air and other times, so much was coming through that my stomach was inflating and air way being forced into my ears (or so it felt). Each time I looked at the machine, it said that it was at 14cm. I pushed the "mask fit" button several times during the night when this was happening and for the most part got a green smiley face so I assume the mask was not leaking excessively. Is this normal?
Yes, I think what you are describing is normal.
I'm three years into PAPing. When I put my mask on each night, I can still
feel the air pressure build up in my upper airway at the beginning of the night. But if I wake up in the middle of the night? There are times I have to either put my hand in front of the exhaust vent or pull the pillows slightly away from my nose just to make sure the machine is still on and blowing air simply because I've gotten so used to the way the air feels that I no longer feel the air flowing through the mask even though it is still flowing through the mask.
Another thing that can create a sensation of differing airflow through the mask at different times is the Resmed EPR system. Do you know if the tech who set up your machine turned EPR on? And if so, what's the EPR setting? If EPR is turned on, then the pressure goes down by a fixed amount at the beginning of each exhalation and then it goes back up near the end of the exhalation or at the beginning of the next inhalation. You may be sensitive enough where you are detecting that subtle difference in airflow.
Finally, it's also possible that you may be sensing the FOT algorithm kicking in to test whether or not your airway is obstructed or clear when the S9 is trying to determine how to classify a particular apnea event. One thing to keep in mind about wake breathing: Wake breathing is much more irregular than sleep breathing and when you are using the machine for long periods of time while you are awake, sometimes your natural, normal wake breathing patterns are mistaken by the machine for abnormal sleep breathing patterns---the machine cannot tell you are awake after all.
Quote:Is it normal and ok that I'm feeling air going into my belly and my ears? Will that improve with time?
Air in the stomach is called aerophagia. For most people, it gets better with time. But for a few of us (including me), aerophagia is a serious problem that does not go away on its own. If you wind up having painful aerophagia you should call the sleep doc's office. At the start, they'll tell you to just continue to keep trying to use the machine and they'll give you a bunch of self-help tips that are essentially the same as the self help tips for people with GERD problems. (Sleep on your left side; raise the head of the bed; don't eat for several hours before bedtime; etc.). If the problem persists OR if the aerophagia becomes painful OR if you cannot sleep because of the aerophagia keep nagging the doctor about it. In my case, a switch from straight CPAP to APAP was first tried, but that didn't really help. Then the doc switched me to BiPAP and then to BiPAP Auto. The switch to BiPAP Auto finally brought my aerophagia problems under control and I no longer wake up in serious pain several times a week.
Quote:I also felt as though I was breathing way too fast at times. I noticed these things as I was laying waiting to go to fall asleep. It was distressing at first, but then I forced myself to pay attention to the TV and I fell asleep pretty quickly.
These are common sensations for new CPAPers. Focusing on your breathing patterns changes your breathing quite a bit. And EPR can sometimes make it feel like the machine is rushing you to inhale before you are done exhaling. Or at least that's how it felt to me back when I was a newbie. Time and experience using the machine usually resolves these feelings.
Quote:I was hoping to be able to access info about my AHI and the type of apneas I was having as well as info on how many breaths per minute I was taking. Is it possible to get any of this info through the cpap itself without pulling the SD card?
If you really are using an S9 AutoSet and the tech who set the machine up set the Sleep Quality Setting to ON instead of USAGE, then you can get the AHI information from the LCD (along with a breakdown into AI and CAI, which allows you to compute the HI and OAI).
You will only be able to get information on your respiratory rate (breaths per minute) by downloading the data into SleepyHead. And that will only work if the Sleep Quality setting is set to On as I recall.
Quote:I did pull the SD card and put it into sleepyhead but I have no idea what I'm looking at. When I look at the statistics screen, my hours per night is listed as "1922978:-14" and my AHI is 0.0. When I click the daily tab, it only shows data for 11/14, but I didn't even get the cpap until the 15th.
When I look at the data for 11/14, under details, it says my AHI is 0.0 but on the adjacent Flow Rate chart, it says "Selection AHI = 81.41." The events tab says I had 61 clear airway events and 3 obstructive apnea events.
Not sure what the problem might be. But it's worth checking the time on the machine. The "day" runs from noon to noon. So the data labeled 11/14 runs from noon 11/14 to 11:59 AM 11/15. In other words, the 11/14 data includes the data from the night that starts on 11/14 and ends on the morning of 11/15.