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Traveling/Flying with CPAP Machine
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PaulaO2 Offline
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Posts: 8,065
Joined: Feb 2012

Machine: S9 Autoset
Mask Type: Full face mask
Mask Make & Model: F&P Simplus
Humidifier: H5i
CPAP Pressure: 14-20
CPAP Software: SleepyHead

Other Comments: Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome, Hypermobility Type; chronic sarcasm

Sex: Undisclosed
Location: western NC, USA

Post: #31
RE: Traveling/Flying with CPAP Machine
Good luck with that. I'm not good at any of it. The insomnia or the staying out of trouble.

PaulaO2
Apnea Board Moderator
www.ApneaBoard.com


Breathe deeply and count to zen.

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.
12-12-2013 09:40 PM
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Peter_C Offline

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Posts: 1,308
Joined: Sep 2013

Machine: System One DS960HS
Mask Type: Full face mask
Mask Make & Model: Mirage Quattro "MED"
Humidifier: Attached
CPAP Pressure: Auto mode-script is:15/3/3
CPAP Software: EncoreBasic Other Software

Other Comments: Severe obstructive sleep apnea 1999/Just got an ASV machine

Sex: Male
Location: Akron, Ohio USA

Post: #32
RE: Traveling/Flying with CPAP Machine
(12-12-2013 01:37 PM)JohnNJ Wrote:  This thread has veered way off course. Not sure how the mods handle this sort of thing here.

Am not a MOD, and not sure either - but the usual way is it's up to the OP (Original Poster) to care or not care (it's their thread).

But as this forum is strictly about one issue, a MOD may choose to move it to off-topic I suppose.

Back on the topic, I've flown with my PAP machine a fair bit, and while you *could* check it, I would not suggest doing so unless you are willing to lose it either for a while or forever. As it is medical equipment, I have never had an issue carrying it in it's bag, plus one personal carry-on bag. Every single time at security they want it opened, and they want to screen it for explosives. So I would suggest having it in a good bag, with the machine itself separated from hose, mask, etc as it's the machine they want to see.

*I* am not a DOCTOR or any type of Health Care Professional. My thoughts/suggestions/ideas are strictly only my opinions.

"Only two defining forces have ever offered to die for you. Jesus Christ and the American Soldier. One died for your Soul, the other for your Freedom."
12-13-2013 11:17 AM
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ImaSurvivor Offline

Preferred Members-2

Posts: 322
Joined: Nov 2013

Machine: ResMed S9 Auto
Mask Type: Nasal pillows
Mask Make & Model: Swift FX
Humidifier: H5i Heated Humidifier, ClimateLine Tubing
CPAP Pressure: 10
CPAP Software: SleepyHead

Other Comments: Moderate Sleep Apnea, Began using CPAP 11/27/2013

Sex: Female
Location: New York State

Post: #33
RE: Traveling/Flying with CPAP Machine
Thanks Peter_C. Good Suggestions. Everything I have seen says to definitely carry it on rather than check it. It makes good sense so it will not be lost and also the handling of it will be more gentle. I usually take a carry on (duffle bag) and my purse which is the limit allowed. However, medical equipment is not counted in the allotment so it can be a third carry-on. For simplicity in the amount of bags I physically have to carry though, I am considering trying to stuff my purse inside my duffle bag. If I can get it to fit. Unfortunately that is always a challenge for me.

I am convinced I will need to remove the machine from the bag and in the long run I am glad for thorough security. I know it is not necessary to remove the hose and mask from the bag. I have seen tips to place each part of the machine in clear plastic bags to keep it clean from germs while placed in the bins. I don't know if that is really necessary. I understand one may not want their mask exposed to the dirty bins but it seems like it would be rare for germs to reach inside the machines. Another tip is to request security officers to change their gloves while handling the machines but not sure I would ever request that and add extra time for them to do that. Lines can be long and hectic going through security. I usually just want to get through it, gather my things and head to the gate.
(This post was last modified: 12-13-2013 11:41 AM by ImaSurvivor.)
12-13-2013 11:38 AM
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givememoresleep Offline

Members

Posts: 18
Joined: Mar 2012

Machine: PR-S1
Mask Type: Nasal pillows
Mask Make & Model: Resmed Swift FX
Humidifier: pr
CPAP Pressure: auto 9-15 c-flex mode
CPAP Software: SleepyHead

Other Comments: cpap user since 1994

Sex: Male
Location:

Post: #34
RE: Traveling/Flying with CPAP Machine
I only had one problem getting through security and that was at a small regional airport in Lubbock TX. The TSA agents were spread thin as they were also doing random checks at the gates leaving nobody available to do the swab of my machine. It was torture hearing my name being called on the PA system for final boarding call and not being able to get through security. Before anyone says to give yourself enough time, this was not the case as this was the first flight of the day and I was in line before the screening process started. I had to wait 10 hours for the next flight.
12-13-2013 09:54 PM
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PaulaO2 Offline
Wiki Editor
Moderators

Posts: 8,065
Joined: Feb 2012

Machine: S9 Autoset
Mask Type: Full face mask
Mask Make & Model: F&P Simplus
Humidifier: H5i
CPAP Pressure: 14-20
CPAP Software: SleepyHead

Other Comments: Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome, Hypermobility Type; chronic sarcasm

Sex: Undisclosed
Location: western NC, USA

Post: #35
RE: Traveling/Flying with CPAP Machine
If you are really germ phobic, you can do the plastic bag thing but it will slow things down. And the glove thing, too. They change their gloves after each swipe anyway (or they are supposed to). The last time I went through, she changed her gloves twice. Each time, she swiped them first, removed them so they were inside out, and waited to dispose them until the swipe came back clean. (I use a wheelchair so my process time and swipe time is huge)

But really, they do it so fast now, especially the big airports, germs don't have a chance to keep up.

PaulaO2
Apnea Board Moderator
www.ApneaBoard.com


Breathe deeply and count to zen.

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.
12-13-2013 10:04 PM
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Peter_C Offline

Advisory Members

Posts: 1,308
Joined: Sep 2013

Machine: System One DS960HS
Mask Type: Full face mask
Mask Make & Model: Mirage Quattro "MED"
Humidifier: Attached
CPAP Pressure: Auto mode-script is:15/3/3
CPAP Software: EncoreBasic Other Software

Other Comments: Severe obstructive sleep apnea 1999/Just got an ASV machine

Sex: Male
Location: Akron, Ohio USA

Post: #36
RE: Traveling/Flying with CPAP Machine
After so many years on my dream machine, I don't even clean my mask but weekly or so - it's your call, but I am not focusing much on germs in my life as a whole and have had no issues.

At one point I flew 19 times in one year for work, and never did any special cleaning or bagging of my gear and never got ill at all - it's totally your call, but I sorta believe that many germs are good, or if not good, at least normal for our systems to deal with. Just my thinking.

*I* am not a DOCTOR or any type of Health Care Professional. My thoughts/suggestions/ideas are strictly only my opinions.

"Only two defining forces have ever offered to die for you. Jesus Christ and the American Soldier. One died for your Soul, the other for your Freedom."
12-13-2013 11:34 PM
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ImaSurvivor Offline

Preferred Members-2

Posts: 322
Joined: Nov 2013

Machine: ResMed S9 Auto
Mask Type: Nasal pillows
Mask Make & Model: Swift FX
Humidifier: H5i Heated Humidifier, ClimateLine Tubing
CPAP Pressure: 10
CPAP Software: SleepyHead

Other Comments: Moderate Sleep Apnea, Began using CPAP 11/27/2013

Sex: Female
Location: New York State

Post: #37
RE: Traveling/Flying with CPAP Machine
I have learned so much really good and valuable info on this board. I ran into a retired colleague and friend at a Christmas Luncheon yesterday. Discovered he has been on CPAP for three years. Told him I was going to be traveling with it soon. He mentioned he had checked his when he flew and no problems. I told him it wasn't a good idea to risk losing it or rough treatment of luggage. He hadn't thought of that. He was unaware it didn't count in the allotment of carry on bags. He was happy for the information as he will be traveling in the new year.

I have referred several individuals who are facing the possibility of CPAP here. Reading for a month before I had my second titration study filled me with a lot of knowledge of machines available, masks available and what to expect. I had asked my friend what type of machine he had i.e. auto machine or just continuous. He didn't know and didn't seem to know there was a difference.

I can't praise and thank people enough on here for sharing the wealth of information, experiences. There is such a learning curve with this new normal. Planning to donate to the board soon (when I remove myself from the recliner and morning coffee to retrieve my cc no.)
(This post was last modified: 12-14-2013 08:56 AM by ImaSurvivor.)
12-14-2013 08:32 AM
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RockABye Offline

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Posts: 31
Joined: Sep 2013

Machine: ResMed S9 Autoset
Mask Type: Nasal pillows
Mask Make & Model: TapPap; Respironics Nuance
Humidifier: H5i
CPAP Pressure: 5-15
CPAP Software: SleepyHead

Other Comments: Moderate OSA;

Sex: Female
Location: OK, US

Post: #38
RE: Traveling/Flying with CPAP Machine
I had to fly to Chicago with my CPAP machine this week (just got home last night). I had just received my machine on Monday, so I had asked the DME about the air travel with it and he explained about having to take the machine out of the bag and put it in the bin. He said not to put any non-CPAP related items in the ResMed bag. It should only contain "medically needed" items. He advised me to never, ever put it in checked luggage in case the luggage was lost, and to always keep it with me. He also recommended keeping the ResMed documentation in the bag so that if I happened to run across a TSA agent on his first day on the job, I could show them the booklet that explains it is medical equipment.

At the TSA checkpoint on the flight out, the agent that was giving the instructions specifically mentioned that all CPAP machines must be removed from their cases, but the humidifier could be left in the case. They didn't swab my machine as some people have mentioned was done to their machine. No one questioned me for having two carry-ons plus a purse. But when I flew out of Chicago, two different TSA agents asked me to "consolidate" my bags down to two while I was in line, but each time I just told them that the one bag was my CPAP and they said it was fine. At the xray machine, I again took out only the CPAP machine and not the humidifier, and it passed through with no problem. No one asked to swab anything there either and it's a very large airport, so maybe they have stopped doing that? As others have stated, I didn't have to remove my hose, mask or power supply from the bag either. I had enough room in my roller bag to put the CPAP case, but I knew that these small planes would probably end up having us leave the roller bags at the door of the plane for loading into the baggage area and I didn't want to risk any damage to my machine, so I kept it with me. (Both flights were on United's Embraer ERJ145 jets.) I was watching the workers unload the roller bags from the luggage area at each landing and I was glad I'd made the decision not to pack it into the roller bag! They really toss those bags around.

By the time the car service got me to the hotel, everything nearby was closed so there wasn't a chance to get distilled water. I used bottled water. My DME had said that bottled water would be fine but to try to find one that doesn't say "minerals added to enhance flavor." Since I only had to use the bottled water one night and was able to find one that didn't have added minerals, I'm sure it didn't hurt anything. I washed the humidifier thoroughly today now that I'm home again.

Traveling with the CPAP wasn't quite as much of a hassle as I thought it might be. I've become very fond of my machine (which makes sleeping SO much better!) so I was pretty protective of it. I would hate to have to sleep without it for any length of time. Anyway, you can travel with it without fear of having any problems getting through Security with it, but keep it with you and don't risk putting it in either checked luggage or in a roller bag that they probably will take away at the aircraft's door if you're flying one of the smaller planes.
12-14-2013 08:31 PM
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ImaSurvivor Offline

Preferred Members-2

Posts: 322
Joined: Nov 2013

Machine: ResMed S9 Auto
Mask Type: Nasal pillows
Mask Make & Model: Swift FX
Humidifier: H5i Heated Humidifier, ClimateLine Tubing
CPAP Pressure: 10
CPAP Software: SleepyHead

Other Comments: Moderate Sleep Apnea, Began using CPAP 11/27/2013

Sex: Female
Location: New York State

Post: #39
RE: Traveling/Flying with CPAP Machine
Great news RockABye ... thanks for sharing your experience. I received my Medical Equipment ID luggage tag in the mail today. We have a layover in Chicago. Usually try and get direct flights ... so much easier! And worry free particularly in winter. Couldn't get seats on the direct this time though. Hope the weather is nice to us in Chicago! Smile
12-14-2013 08:48 PM
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PaulaO2 Offline
Wiki Editor
Moderators

Posts: 8,065
Joined: Feb 2012

Machine: S9 Autoset
Mask Type: Full face mask
Mask Make & Model: F&P Simplus
Humidifier: H5i
CPAP Pressure: 14-20
CPAP Software: SleepyHead

Other Comments: Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome, Hypermobility Type; chronic sarcasm

Sex: Undisclosed
Location: western NC, USA

Post: #40
RE: Traveling/Flying with CPAP Machine
They used to swipe anything and everything. Now they seem to pick and choose at sheer random, which I prefer.

Thanks for the feedback on how it went for you! I am usually busy with other stuff and can never watch what they do with my gear.

The DME was correct about what else to have in the bag. You can put medications in there, stuff like that. Probably could get away with a magazine or book, ticket stuff in the outside pocket, but probably not much more than that.

I used to put my CPAP in the overhead bin and keep my personal bag with me, that way I had my book and whatever. But the way they shove those bigger bags in there, cramming their crap in, I was considering not doing that any more! I flew first class on my last trip and the steward stood my bag upright right. He put it across the aisle where there was a smaller section. Several small purses went up there after that. So it worked out.

PaulaO2
Apnea Board Moderator
www.ApneaBoard.com


Breathe deeply and count to zen.

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.
12-15-2013 12:12 AM
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