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What are the alternatives to CPAP?
#21
Getting back to the actual, original question of this thread, here is a good summary that may help (some have already been noted in previous posts):

- Sleep propped up. I did this for several years. It was not an ideal solution, but it did provide improvement. I got two large, different size wedges, used one, then other and then both together. Eventually, I bought an adjustable bed.
- Lose weight. Many folks report good results from this. It did nothing for me.
- Oral Appliance (aka, dental appliance). This works for some people, but the main, undesirable side effect is TMD (which happened to me).
- UPPP surgery. This is very painful and has a low success rate (except for treating just the snoring issue – it has a high success rate for that). For severe sleep apnea, the success rate is nearly zero (which happened to me; I was mislead and told my chances of success would be 20 to 50%).
- Maxillomandibular advancement surgery. Details at this link:
http://www.sleepapneasurgery.com/maxillo...ement.html
This is extremely painful but has a fairly high success rate if (emphasize: IF) it has already been determined that Oral Appliance treatment is effective. But, this will modify your face. You will likely look like a different person (that could be good, bad or indifferent).
- Tracheotomy surgery. Although the success rate is effectively 100%, virtually everyone in the world agrees this is the treatment of last resort. You will have a hole in your neck for the rest of your life.
- There are numerous other treatment and surgical options (i.e. tongue manipulations). To mention each individually is probably beyond the scope of this forum. Eventually, a doctor with the appropriate sleep specialties needs to be involved.

If you want to reconsider ways to get your CPAP working for you, there are already hundreds of threads out there with all kinds of options and advice.
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#22
Hi boar, Hope you have finally found some answers to your question.
Just to change subjects for a bit, I noticed you are using a F@P Simplus FF mask. I have been reviewing these and was wondering how you found it? If you don't mind I would appreciate some live feedback. Cheers.
Sleep Tight...
Gabby
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#23
My wife switched from cpap to a dental appliance last year. Now she snores nearly as bad as she did before she got her cpap machine. I'm suspicious the mouthpiece isn't very effective.
"Sometimes the magic works . . . and sometimes it doesn't" -- Chief Dan George in the movie Little Big Man
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#24
(02-26-2014, 10:22 AM)Zorki1c Wrote: My wife switched from cpap to a dental appliance last year. Now she snores nearly as bad as she did before she got her cpap machine. I'm suspicious the mouthpiece isn't very effective.

with those devices like you are speaking of, if there is not a sleep test (not just titration) then they won't know if they are working to treat SA. You are saying she snores nearly as bad as before the dental appliance and that could indicate it is not helping.

As I said, and as you seem to think as well, without follow-up from the doc that prescribed the treatment to verify that it is controlling the SA, then the patient won't know if they are receiving sufficient treatment. I suspect this is a common occurrence and to me, it is dangerous if the patient isn't getting sufficient treatment as we or most of us know what the repercussions of untreated SA are or can be.YMMV
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#25
The Pillar procedure was the "miracle" cure a few years back. It turns out the success rate is not that good, and it doesn't get recommended that much these days.

UPPP surgery has a low success rate and a high rate of problems. Generally a BAD!!! idea.

A limited number of people have tonsil or adenoid problems that they probably need to fix anyway, and it might fix or improve their apnea.

Unfortunately, there are a lot of chop happy surgeons with delusions of grandeur or visions of dollar signs dancing in their heads.

There's a procedure that involves moving the jaw forward, but it's a MAJOR surgical procedure.

Dental appliances have low success rates, may only give partial relief, and can cause jaw problems like TMJD.

A lot of us have found ways to solve our CPAP problems with persistence, help on this forum, and help from our doctors or DMEs. Unfortunately a lot of doctors and DMEs have very little experience or interest in fixing the patient's problems. You often have to find your own fix for your problems.

I'm hoping that one day, we'll have a better treatment for apnea. Some sort of Pillar procedure for the inside of your throat or some way to somehow rebuild your throat to not collapse. There's no procedure out there that I'd consider today until after I'd tried REALLY long and hard with CPAP.
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.
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#26
I am still exploring alternatives after one year of partially successful cpap...started with nasal pillows, but had mouth opening problems and switched to F&P Simplus full face mask. Mouth still opens when relaxed in sleep so mask loosens and leaks are "horrible" (per sleepyhead summary). Added chin strap...nope, it stretches out. Then added a soft cervical collar and some days that works well, to keep my mouth shut, but it is erratic, and I can't explain why. For days there will be good sleephead graphs but then for days or weeks on end there are awful large leaks and although the AHI is usually under 5, there are so many UAs, which look to me like OAs on sleepytime graphs, that I remain concerned. Also I have that foggy brain after such nights, so I know I am Oxygen deprived too much during these "off" times. But I persist using cpap, and my next trial will be to add a mandibular advancement device. My neurologist and dentist both recommended this and we'll check out the efficacy via an oxymeter for a week or so. The oral appliance may not be covered by insurance but it's worth it, as I'd like to live without recurrence of Atrial Fib which was what started me on journey to begin with. Weight loss would help.Oh-jeez
Inspired
Bigwink
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#27
My wife switched from a cpap to an oral appliance at a cost of nearly three grand and I would like to flush it down a toilet. She snores as loud as she did before she got a cpap.
"Sometimes the magic works . . . and sometimes it doesn't" -- Chief Dan George in the movie Little Big Man
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