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Understanding Leak Data, HELP for DUMMIES PLEASE!
#1
Hello!

3 months into treatment and I am hoping for feedback on how things are looking for me...please!

I fiddle ALOT with my Dreamwear mask as I always feel that it is leaking...HOWEVER, I believe it is perceived rather than real!  Any air rushing sound worries me and I awake and adjust my mask by tugging a bit till it quiets down.  I am doing myself a real disservice by paying too much attention and therefore interrupting my sleep especially since I am not "feeling" any leaks and only "hearing" the air movement.  I am a very light side sleeper, I wear earplugs and have even purchased one of those firm contour pillows in order that my Dreamwear mask won't get pushed around...and cause leaks, lol!  Maybe I should just sleep and not be so preoccupied by leaks but that leads me to the source of my concern....

Now that I am 3 months in, I have gotten fairly used to a mask on my face, have gotten my AHI figure down hovering around the 1.4 mark and for the most part, feel better during the day.  But frankly, I am at a loss on how to interpret the SH data leak graphs!  I have exhaustively searched the many topics on leak rate, etc. and have read all the posts but I am left still scratching my head as I can't grasp what the chart, leak rate etc. all really means!  Since I can't seem to grasp the subject, I don't know if my leak rate is good, bad or what, ugh!!  I need some help here please.  I obviously need it broken down into super simple terms in order to understand what the leak info means

To confuse me further, I have 2 lines on my leak rate chart and not sure which line I should be focusing on for the leak status.   Here are 2 shots of SH data.  First nite I slept and ignored my mask.  Second nite I spent adjusting and interrupting my own sleep.  Thank you in advance for your time and input! 

[Image: ZU9b1KR.png]

[Image: JfNYuY4.png]
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#2
Looks pretty good to me. PR machines report the combined vent rate plus unintentional leak. That's the upper line on the leak graph. The lower line is calculated from the upper line. It's the lower line that represents the leak; and that's the one that counts. You have a couple of spikes over the leak redline. Probably when you moved.

See the dashed line in the leak graph. If the lower leak line crosses above that dashed line, that's too much.

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#3
You have great numbers and few leaks. 95% of the time your leaks are less than 6 LPM. You are obsessing about nothing. Enjoy a great nights sleep!
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#4
Those two sharp peaks are where the mask came off or the hose did. Extreme rises like that indicate a sudden incident. You must have fixed it in your sleep.

SleepyHead will also make any high leaks be marked in gray, as you can see during those peaks. So just look for the gray and all is well.

And it is okay to obsess. It is how we learn.
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.




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#5
the Red Dashed line, Leak Rate Upper Threshold" appears to be the Sleepyhead default which is valid for ResMed devices, not Respironics.  PR machines report the combined vent rate plus unintentional leak which varies by mask and pressure and is much higher than ResMed.  Look for the LL in events and the Grey bar to show if you have an issue.
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#6
I don't get the leak graphs, either.  I was obsessed with sounds and leaks for awhile, and with the difficulty of exhaling, as I wanted to do this right.  But it seems the nasal mask I use will have some air, or 'leaks' through the bottom vents so you can exhale, which may be what you're hearing.  It's like a baby who is healthy enough to cry - it's a good sound!  Keep those vents clean and dry.  Make sure the upper part isn't blowing air into your face and eyes and relax.

Have you tried the size template in 'Mask Primer'  (see bonjour's signature; "All PAP masks leak, it’s just a question of how much.")?  If you're confident that the size you are using is correct for your nose, or nares, and with numbers as good as yours are, you are doing well. 

All the best to you,  Sleep-well
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#7
(05-28-2017, 06:47 PM)TrailerSweetheart Wrote: I fiddle ALOT with my Dreamwear mask as I always feel that it is leaking

Well, it is.  All masks have a built in leak to prevent the build up of Carbon Dioxide, and without that leak your health would be in danger.  There is always an intentional leak.

The question of concern is whether your leak rate is significantly higher than the built in rate.  SleepyHead will bring this to your attention.  If it isn't showing excessive leaks relax.
Ed Seedhouse
VA7SDH

Your brain is not the boss.

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#8
All masks have a vent so air can exit. This is called INTENTIONAL leak. With the mask and machine on, you can find the vent holes easily. Sometimes that air will hit the sheets or pillow and will make the sound louder and seem much worse than it is. So lay down with the mask and machine on. Listen. If you hear increased noise from when you were sitting up, move the sheet or push down on the pillow. I once had a noise I could not track down and it was the earphone cord going right in front of the vent whenever I put my head a certain way. Drove me nuts until I found the source.

Air that leaks out from between the silicone seal and your skin is called UNINTENTIONAL leak. And that's the kind you do not want. If moving the sheets, pillowcase, or whatever did not reduce or change the sound, use a finger and go around the edge of the mask. Avoid putting your hand in front of the vent. When your finger contacts the leak (you may not feel it), the sound will change.

The CPAP machine can adjust to handle intentional leaks. That is one of the reasons we tell the machine what kind of mask we are using or, in the case of PR machines, we can even enter a code for a mask. It then knows that mask's intentional leak rate. Any leak over that amount is considered a Large Leak (LL).

SleepyHead uses 24 as the standard intentional leak rate. I think you can change that in the settings somewhere? Anyway, you can still see the actual rate in the chart and in the listing in the left. Find out the leak rate for your mask and know you should keep the leaks lower than that.

Get to know your mask. Watch YouTube videos on it. Understand what each part is for. Look at yourself in the mirror and feel the mask over so as your hands touch it, you know what you are touching. That way you are more comfortable with it at night.

Fretting and obsessing is normal. We all do it, did it, and fall back into it. It's okay. You are doing the right thing by figuring out what is going on and what you can do about it.

If you are
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.




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#9
What you are experiencing is probably normal for some of us.  I am using an Eson nasal mask at the moment.  It always fiddle with it a lot before getting it to settle in leak free.  The small leaks annoy me (noise and sensation on my skin) but are barely perceptible in Sleepyhead and don't affect my therapy.  They don't bother me if I am sleeping, but annoy me if I am trying to fall asleep.  Once I get it settled in....ahhh.... sleep.

Sleep-well
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#10
(05-28-2017, 10:44 PM)justMongo Wrote: Looks pretty good to me.  PR machines report the combined vent rate plus unintentional leak.  That's the upper line on the leak graph.  The lower line is calculated from the upper line.  It's the lower line that represents the leak; and that's the one that counts.  You have a couple of spikes over the leak redline.  Probably when you moved.

See the dashed line in the leak graph.  If the lower leak line crosses above that dashed line, that's too much.

Hi I'm having same problem, reading & understanding Leak Rate. I don't have any red dash line on my graph like on the OP's graph, but then again my graph only goes from 0.0 to 40.0, is there a way I can change it? 

Also is it proper forum etiquette to ask for help here or should I start a new thread?   

Thanks in advance
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