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[Treatment] Vitamin C for Central Sleep Apnea?
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retired_guy Offline

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Post: #31
RE: Vitamin C for Central Sleep Apnea?
(07-30-2014 07:43 PM)archangle Wrote:  The quacks, "nature lovers," health food salesmen, and news media make it sound like Woo root is the cure for cancer.

Ok... I looked this up and I'll give it a try, but I'm not sure how it could cure cancer.

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07-30-2014 07:51 PM
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archangle Offline
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Post: #32
RE: Vitamin C for Central Sleep Apnea?
"Woo" is a generic quackery/fakery/stupidity term I picked up from randi.org. Great site to read about all the mystic nonsense.

Get the free SleepyHead software here.
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If it's midnight and a DME tells you it's dark outside, go and check it yourself.
07-30-2014 09:49 PM
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twdc33 Offline

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Post: #33
RE: Vitamin C for Central Sleep Apnea?
This post is fascinating to me because I too have been wondering what alternative there might be to pap therapy. It also seems like more and more people are being diagnosed even at younger ages. I have felt like there has to be a solution that would get to the cause. Granted the machine therapy is life saving, but...
As a chiropractor I have thought there might be some sort of autonomic dystonia involved. Perhaps vagal or hypoglossal nerve damage or malfunction. The closest thing I can find to a natural approach are the arduous tongue and mouth exercises prescribed by the south american clinics. Didn't work for me. The idea of a chemical imbalance also make perfect sense and honestly I cannot understand why more thought is not given to these types of solutions. After all just imagine if you were a drug company and you could develop a pill that could control apnea. I would like some stock in that. I am going to try the suggestions above and will report back. Thanks DG for thinking out of the box.
08-13-2014 09:07 PM
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Skypilot Offline

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Post: #34
RE: Vitamin C for Central Sleep Apnea?
The two glasses of medicinal red wine, cab-sav, before going to bed each night did not make any difference to me....
08-13-2014 10:55 PM
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archangle Offline
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Post: #35
RE: Vitamin C for Central Sleep Apnea?
We'd all like to find simpler/better solutions for sleep apnea. Despite how many people have been searching, the evidence just isn't there.

Many of us look for chemical solutions. Some want something "natural," but if natural woo root extract works, that's a chemical. If GreedCo Pharma makes a ApNoMore tablet that's just different chemicals. We haven't found a chemical that makes much difference when you test it.

It might be that vitamin D deficiency causes or aggravates apnea in some people, but it appears that for most people, D doesn't help unless they have a deficiency.

We'd like to find some sort of manipulation that works. Chiropractic, acupuncture, sleeping position, exercises, surgery, etc. Sleeping on your side, your stomach, or on a recliner seem to help some people, but the effect is usually minor or absent in most people.

Dental devices have been tried. For some people, it does the job, but quite a few people get limited or no relief. There can be problems, particularly TMJ jaw problems.

There are some "tongue grabber" devices. Limited if any success there, too.

We've even tried surgery. In some people with "defects" like enlarged tonsils or deviated septums, it helps some of them and fails in others. UPPP surgery may help some to some degree, but most of us think the side effects and risks are not worth it. There's a jaw advancement surgery that may work better, but it's much more major surgery. There are a few other surgical procedures, but none of them are clear winners.

Weight loss helps some, but it's not a guaranteed cure. Some people get cured, some get a little help, others get no improvement in apnea.

There is some research into electrical stimulation of some electrodes planted in the throat. I think it's promising, but too early to pronounce a verdict yet.

I hate the medical mafia types as much as the next guy, but they are actually trying. Even the alternative therapy people are trying. The nutjobs are trying, too. CPAP beats all these other options by a large margin.

The evidence is clear. Nothing else is nearly as good as CPAP, not even close.

Keep looking. Just don't ignore the evidence.

Get the free SleepyHead software here.
Useful links.
Click here for information on the main alternative to CPAP.
If it's midnight and a DME tells you it's dark outside, go and check it yourself.
08-14-2014 01:42 AM
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Marnid2014 Offline

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Post: #36
RE: Vitamin C for Central Sleep Apnea?
(08-21-2013 02:14 PM)dgossman Wrote:  DocWils - there are lots of websites and doctors that advocate the use of vinegar, often apple cider vinegar, for treatment of a wide variety of conditions, Usually about 1 teaspoon is taken once or twice each day diluted in water or juice. I was certainly not suggesting taking it "raw", the acidity could damage the throat tissues. I would not consider red wine to be a good option as red wine contains tannins which are reported to be migraine triggers which I tend to avoid when possible. I am wondering in this forum of anyone has used vinegar to shift blood pH to improve the response of the chemoreceptors that drive respiration. The level of vitamin C I am taking is not triggering diarrhea - I have been taking it for about 6 months with no ill effect. I am aware via my own research of one other prescription based medication that can be used to shift pH but it acts on an enzyme pathway in the kidneys that I am somewhat reluctant to mess with. I will dig up the details when I am back at home and have access to the file. I chose the level of C that I am taking based on the desire to maximize the impact of the shift in pH relative to the short half life of the C in the blood stream and the desire to get through at least half the night on a single dose while staying below levels that are recognized as safe and unlikely to cause any negative side effects. So far that is working. All of this has been done with the full knowledge of my doctor - she asks me for the technical papers now - not the other way around. So far I have found only one doctor or pharmacist who I thought had the background to understand what I am doing. He was a hematologist I consulted and had an undergrad degree in biochemistry which allowed us to actual walk through the chemistry. While I can appreciate the need for some patients with CA to use PAP it is my desire to fix the problem via chemistry not treat a symptom via an electro-mechanical device that has the potential to create a dependency. I recognize that the biochemistry of the human body starts to break down in the mid 30s and only gets worse as one gets older. That is why I take a wide variety of supplements. I am considering this to be just one of those breakdowns and am trying to treat it as much as possible in that way. The prescription I am taking to prevent afib is not, strictly speaking, a heart medication. Vagal afib is not a result of heard disease but rather a toned vagal nerve - usually a good thing for the heart but as with anything else too much of a good thing can be bad. It is propantheline bromide and is an muscarinic receptor antagonist. I tried oxybutinin but did not have good results with that one. A cardiologist in New York came up with this therapy for vagal afib just a few years ago and it is gaining some acceptance in the community of patients (often competitive athletes) with the condition. There is no reason to believe that the C would interfere with the function of this medication. My hope is that I will remain afib free long enough that I can work my way off of the prescription but I don't see any long term way to increase the responsiveness of the chemoreceptors short of the vitamin C. I did have one doctor suggest that the vitamin C might also be acting via its antioxidant effects to essentially scrub the receptors "clean". I am not sure I see that mechanism as likely given the short term effects. All of my doctors get a complete copy of my current supplements whenever I see them. I am curious about your comment regarding vitamin C being a stimulant. I was unable to find anything in the technical literature in that regard. Do you have a reference you can provide? I have trouble seeing how that could happen from a biochemistry perspective. I am aware that C can prevent certain stimulants from being activated or absorbed by the body but that would appear to have the opposite effect. And finally I know that my treatment is based on a theory - and not one that could be dealt with via arterial blood draws for pH and blood gas measurements all night since that would disrupt the sleep cycles and therefore disrupt the validity of any results. Nevertheless the buffering capacity of the blood and its mechanism appears to be fairly well understood and a small shift in the buffered pH value via a mechanism such as vitamin C might be just enough to kick the chemoreceptors into gear when needed. Certainly for me the night time oximeter data that I have suggests it is working. I am always looking for better ideas, none the less. Self medicating with the full knowledge and cooperation of both my doctor and hematologist would seem to be a reasonable option given the lack of apparent knowledge in this area by the medical community in general. If you can point me toward a more effective long term treatment based on the underlying science and not just treating symptoms I would welcome that.

Elen - I also often eat grapefruit but you need to be careful because it can have effects that interact with a wide variety of prescription meds - I only eat it in the morning and never at night because it can inhibit the activity of the propantheline I am taking.

I AM A BIG FAN OF VINEGAR!!!!!!! It's cured my GERD, I am off RX meds for that and I use it to prevent UTI. I am now off my Coumadin as well. (not because of vinegar LOL).

You have to make sure it has the "mother" when buying it.
08-15-2014 06:38 PM
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ProblemSleeper Offline

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Post: #37
RE: Vitamin C for Central Sleep Apnea?
(08-20-2013 04:52 PM)dgossman Wrote:  About a year ago I started developing afib events at night. After about 6 months of doctors prescribing the wrong treatment (beta blockers) I found out through my own research (and after a clean bill of health from a cardiologist and hematologist) that I had vagal afib. The condition was instigated in the middle of the night and after acquiring a recording pulse oximeter I was able to determine that I was having instances of low oxygen (and low heart rate) that correlated with the onset of the afib. I have developed a two pronged approach to dealing with the condition (with the cooperation of my family doctor). (Along with the afib we found that I had high levels of hemoglobin - like I was living at altitude - but I don't.)

I now take a medication at night to suppress the parasympathetic tone and this has helped to keep my pulse rate in the mid 50s or higher (dropping below 50 seemed to be correlated with triggering afib).

I now take 1 gram of C when I go to bed and another in the middle of the night whenever I wake up to reduce my blood pH. (Vitamin C has a relatively short half life in the blood and that is the reason for the second dose in the middle of the night). This seems to have significantly reduced the number of instances when my blood dissolved oxygen levels drop below 90. I now stay at 94-96 for most of the night whereas without this treatment I was in the low 90s with instances dropping into the mid 80s. I also seem to have had my hemoglobin levels not increase as fast as they were before. I suspect the low O2 conditions at night were pushing them up and the higher viscosity of the blood may have also been a factor in the afib susceptibility.

I am wondering if there is anyone else with this sort of experience? I have also heard of taking vinegar as a way of treating central sleep apnea and it may work via the same blood pH shift mechanism so anyone who has tried that I would be curious to hear from as well.

Thank you so much for this post. I developed afib about 7 years ago and have been to a number of cardiologists the most recent of whom prescribed an automatic CPAP machine that I am having a lot of trouble with. (I have had the machine a week now and am having a terrible time with the pressure which seems to be ramping up so high that it cannot be contained in the mask. I haven't had a wink of sleep the nights I have tried to use it and constantly burp and have a sore abdomen from the air that seems to get trapped there. I joined the board to try to get information on how to solve my issues.) At least this cardiologist is looking at something different. I also was put on beta blockers by previous cardiologists that didn't help my condition. My current cardiologist believes strongly in following a diet that cuts out caffeine (which was impeding my sleep, I now know) and fructose. The diet is high in non-sweet vegetables (for example, potatoes are allowed, but not sweet potatoes or corn) and lean protein. (I have no weight problem. That is why I am allowed non-sugary carbohydrates.) He does not believe in most vitamins, however, the exceptions being Fish Oil and Vitamin D.

I have long suspected that I am a lazy breather and will get a recording pulse oximeter to see if I have low oxygen. I know that I will have periods of time where I have a low heart rate in the day time (50's and low 60's) so perhaps it is lower when I am sleeping. I will try the Vitamin C therapy to see if it seems to make a difference. Also, what kind of medication are you taking at night to keep your pulse rate in the mid-50's?

In any case, I am perusing the board to see if I can find answers to my issue with the APAP machine. I was suspecting that because I breathe so shallowly, it keeps ramping up the pressure to an intolerable level.

Again, thanks for your post.
08-16-2014 09:25 PM
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pizza41466 Offline

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Post: #38
RE: Vitamin C for Central Sleep Apnea?
Hi dgossman, it's a year since the last reply to your post that described your attempt to reduce CAs with high doses of vitamin C. I tried it myself and experienced a considerable improvement in CA numbers. Have you develope this methode any further?
06-26-2015 01:42 AM
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