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Which CPAP supplies should I -really- be replacing, and when?
#11
(02-20-2016, 08:23 AM)StoopidMonkey81 Wrote: I just received my first quarterly CPAP parts resupply shipment from Apria and honestly I'm a bit confused. I've only been using the machine for a little over 3 months and this is what they shipped me (after a $60 copay):

(1) New P10 frame with no headband
(1) New ClimateLineAir hose
(5) New P10 Nasal cushions
(6) New air filters

Let's start off with the filters. How often should I be changing them? I've used the same one since I got the machine and when I took it out it didn't look particularly dirty. I know they should be changed, but I'm confused as to why they sent me 6 for a quarterly shipment.

For the cushion, I get that after a while it might start to loosen up but they sent me 5 of them! That seems excessive, no?

Then there's the frame, which doesn't seem to be anywhere in need of replacement. How often should that realistically be replaced?

Finally, the ClimateLineAir tube. Mine still seems nearly-new in condition, and while I'll keep this one as a spare it seems particularly wasteful to throw it away after a mere 3 months!

I'm thinking of cancelling the resupply orders or "maintenance package" or whatever Apria wants to call it. I want to make sure I swap out key parts when their life span is over so I get optimal therapy, but this just seems wasteful and unnecessary. Can anybody give me some advice on what is the smart thing to do here?

I believe my Insurance cover's those Items to be replaced every 6 month's, however my DME will call every 6 months and ask me what I want so I don't necessarily take everything I can, (still have the deductible to pay) anyway I do like many have, and have a stock of supplies on hand, but as long as those parts are taken care of they will last longer than the Insurance allows.
I do the same as others have mentioned, replace and clean and save the old one for back up, until you've accumulated enough new stock.
Sleep-well
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#12
(02-21-2016, 08:57 AM)HermannTheGerman Wrote:
(02-21-2016, 12:28 AM)PaulaO2 Wrote: Change filters often and change that hose. I am a big advocate of getting rid of the hose. Why? Because we really cannot clean it well enough.
May I ask you why we can´t clean a hose well enough?
I have been on one hose for 8 years.
Still was like new.

Hermann

You scare me.

About my 2nd or 3rd yr in, I became ill. Allergy like symptoms that would not go away. Snotting, sneezing, eye watering. Several bouts of bronchitis and sinus infections. We eliminated a bunch of stuff trying to figure out what it was. I went on vacation with my family to FL and I thought "FINALLY! Relief!" But no, it was just as bad.

When I got back, we went through everything I had taken with me and that is when we realized it had to be the CPAP machine. The DME and I discussed it (this was back when they weren't all RTs, but folks who knew what they were doing) and we decided to change out everything we could. Within a week or so, nearly all symptoms were gone. Such a thing has never happened again.

The DME and I discussed it further and decided it was the hose. Even though I was washing the thing nearly every day, with soap, water, then letting it air dry, everything I was told to do, it was a 2yr old hose and it was making me sick. This was also back when I was using distilled water!

That is a long hose that is exposed to moist air 8 or so hrs at a time. No matter how hard we try to clean it, after a while, crap is going to grow.

So, yeah, I change mine every chance I can and I encourage others to do so, too. Hoses are not that expensive. The amount of money I paid to track down what was making me ill? Don't even want to think about it.
PaulaO2
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#13
I wipe the hose from the inside by pumping a sponse trough it with hot water and some dishcleaner.
I make sure that the water has at least 60 degree celsius to kill all legionella and after that I dry it with a DIY hose dryer made from a waterbottle and 2 computer fans.
I made a video about that:




Hermann
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#14
Well that is much better than most. I once looked into using solar to boil water to make it safe to drink and was surprised that some bacteria can survive boiling. Who knew. Running hat water through a room temperature hose and counting on that to sterilize something I am going to breathe through, well personally I don't want to risk that. An autoclave does a good job and requires a much higher temperature for a longer time to do the job.

This like so many things is personal choice and what you feel comfortable with. I can be reasonably sure that changing supplies at what Medicare recommends will not cause health problems.
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#15
(02-21-2016, 12:28 AM)PaulaO2 Wrote: Change filters often and change that hose. I am a big advocate of getting rid of the hose. Why? Because we really cannot clean it well enough. I get a new one, clean the old one, and hang it up. When I get the next one, the old one, and get rid of the oldest one. That way I always have a decent back up. Regular hose (non-Slimline, non-Climateline) is not too expensive. I have one unopened I keep for emergencies. It gets tossed into my suitcase when I travel.

I tend to keep headgear until it is falling apart. Even if they send me a new one, i keep using the old one. Then when I do decide to switch (some times it will stretch faster than other times), I will keep it for backup scavenge it for parts.

Filters should be changed often. I live in an old house with high ceilings, wood floors, 3 dogs, 2 cats, and in a rural area. My filter looks like I run my CPAP off diesel after 30 days. Luckily filters are cheap so I change mine as often as I think of it. Which isn't often enough.

Nasal pillows' lifespan differ. Since there's so little room for movement and adjustability due to size, when they start going bad, they leak like crazy. Even my Nuance will. I know when it is time to change because I can hear myself breathe. Drives me nuts.

Speaking of scavenging, I keep all parts that I can. My DME mails my stuff to me in a rather sturdy box. I have one of them on the shelf next to my CPAP and in there I keep the spares, parts, etc. I clean used parts really, really well; examine under good lighting; and pack in a ziploc bag when absolutely dry. I keep swivels and adapters and frames and pillow sizes I don't use and all that stuff. If my current pillows break, I can go up or down a size until I get a new set.

Best reply ever.

March is my 20th anniversary using Resmed CPAP. Yes, 20 years Smile

I never washed my hoses except for a few weeks ago (it's a hot summer here in Australia) and even after 2 days hanging up there was still water drops inside it. So never again.

I came to realise that the fine dust filter gets filthy in my house after a month and yo can buy them in packs of 12 so I set my watch calendar to remind me to change it on the 1st of each month.

I only wash the nasal pillows if they become really gross, otherwise I replace maybe every 9 months, and the headgear when it falls apart.

They even claim the water chamber must be thrown out and become landfill every 6-12 months. Get farked.

Here in Australia these "consumables" are not covered by insurance and Resmed charges what we call an "Australia Tax" that doubles the price of everything and since we pay for it out of our own pocket people only spend the money when forced to, and then usually from the US via ebay to save $$

Resmed even have the gall to suggest the S9 and Airsense 10 have a 5 year life. BS. They last much longer than that.

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#16
(02-21-2016, 06:24 PM)PaulaO2 Wrote:
(02-21-2016, 08:57 AM)HermannTheGerman Wrote:
(02-21-2016, 12:28 AM)PaulaO2 Wrote: Change filters often and change that hose. I am a big advocate of getting rid of the hose. Why? Because we really cannot clean it well enough.
May I ask you why we can´t clean a hose well enough?
I have been on one hose for 8 years.
Still was like new.

Hermann

You scare me.

About my 2nd or 3rd yr in, I became ill. Allergy like symptoms that would not go away. Snotting, sneezing, eye watering. Several bouts of bronchitis and sinus infections. We eliminated a bunch of stuff trying to figure out what it was. I went on vacation with my family to FL and I thought "FINALLY! Relief!" But no, it was just as bad.

When I got back, we went through everything I had taken with me and that is when we realized it had to be the CPAP machine. The DME and I discussed it (this was back when they weren't all RTs, but folks who knew what they were doing) and we decided to change out everything we could. Within a week or so, nearly all symptoms were gone. Such a thing has never happened again.

The DME and I discussed it further and decided it was the hose. Even though I was washing the thing nearly every day, with soap, water, then letting it air dry, everything I was told to do, it was a 2yr old hose and it was making me sick. This was also back when I was using distilled water!

That is a long hose that is exposed to moist air 8 or so hrs at a time. No matter how hard we try to clean it, after a while, crap is going to grow.

So, yeah, I change mine every chance I can and I encourage others to do so, too. Hoses are not that expensive. The amount of money I paid to track down what was making me ill? Don't even want to think about it.

Excellent response Paula. A similar thing happened to me early on. The RT I had originally (who has since retired) suggested washing the hose with a mixture of 50% water and 50% vinegar, rinse well and air dry until the next change out. I found out that in spite of vigorous rinsing and hanging one week until the next change, there were still water drops in that hose. It is hard to get the hose completely dry inside.

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#17
I've only been on cpap for 3+months and everything is still like new -- however my my DME wanted to sign me up for automatic replacements based on my insurance. I learned that a replacement cushion is $39 if it qualifies for insurance and $80 if not which is crazy. Since I won't reach my high deductible and pay for my supplies even when insured, I decided to go to eBay and Amazon for supplies. I bought 2 cushions on eBay for $39.90! This allows me to have a stash of supplies set aside for when replacements are needed.
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#18
I live in the US. I'm on disability and have Medicaid health coverage. I started CPAP a couple of months ago and just found out last week that Medicaid will only pay for replacement supplies every six months. I don't think the cushion in my nasal mask is going to last that long. I've been using it for about 2.5 months, and I am noticing that it is not keeping its seal as well as it did at first. Looks like I may be shopping for a replacement on ebay.

Oh, and the little white filters? One per month is covered, but the DME told me that I had to come to pick it up because they don't get reimbursed enough to pay them to mail it to me. I offered to send them some stamps. They backtracked and agreed to mail them to me. The postage cost was 48 cents.

Honestly, though, if I have to call them every month and spend 20 minutes on the phone, I will probably buy those myself, too.

When I asked what the recommended replacement interval for the nasal mask cushion was, the rep hemmed and hawed and finally said "well, it depends on what your insurance will cover". She refused to tell me if there was actually an expected life for the part. I just wanted to know if I was doing something to it to make it start to wear out after two months.



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#19
I allow them send me whatever they can send me, since I have no co-pay. I send my used supplies to a friend who pays out of pocket for all his stuff.

But I keep at least one spare on hand of the various supplies- just in case . . .
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#20
I wash my mask and its cushions daily, the hose twice a week. The filter gets changed every two weeks. I have had the plastic swivel fitting on the mask break, and change the cushions when the plastic gets foggy-looking...at about the same time, leaks increase. The end of the hose that slides onto the mask fitting gets loose after some time. The elastic straps on the headgear stretch with use.

However, all this tends to last two to five times longer than the replacement interval allowed by Medicare. I've built up a stash of spares, as a result.
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