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considering CPAP, need advice
#1
My wife who is a nurse told me that I sometime stop breathing while sleeping and snore loudly.
I am a 55 year old man and overweight at 180 lbs and 5' 7".

My family doctor referred me to a sleep clinic but even with blue/cross my out of pocket cost for a sleep study would be $1,500.
I already know I have sleep Apnea. The study seemed like a very expensive way to tell me something I already know.

Last week I did a home test using the Resmed apnea link plus. I returned the test equipment and they phoned with the results and also emailed me the report
When the results were available they indicated mild to moderate apnea with both obstructive and central events.

Here are the numbers

AHI 17

Aeneas were
Obstructive 56%
Central 44%

--------------------
I have had chronic insomnia for decades and need meds to get to sleep. These may be a source of some of the centrals.

How much benefit would I get from CPAP?

The general experience of those around me is that after a diagnostic study and a follow up study the out of pocket expense, with blue cross, is $3,000.
Half the people I have talked to are very pleased with their CPAP therapy and the other half gave up after a short while.

Could really use some advice from those with real experience.
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#2
There is a high noncompliance rate with CPAP therapy. Some people just can't hack, others have no problem with it. The rest of us are somewhere in between. If you set your mind to being successful with it, that's half the battle. Too many people give up, not realizing that without CPAP therapy they will not only continue to lead a miserable sleep-deprived life, but will die early of a heart attack or stroke.

You should be able to get a doctor to write you a prescription for a CPAP machine, but you may need a more sophisticated device such as a ASV machine to treat your central apnea. Usually they will start you out with a simple CPAP machine and if it doesn't successfully treat your sleep apnea they will switch you to a ASV machine.

Do you know what CPAP pressure they determined you need?

Another route to go would be to buy a used CPAP machine and see if it works for you, but you will need that prescription from your doctor. Make sure you get a fully data-capable machine.
Sleepster
Apnea Board Moderator
www.ApneaBoard.com


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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#3
Hi joesetx,
WELCOME! to the forum.!
I would make sure you get a data-capable machine so you can keep track of how you are doing with your CPAP therapy.
Hang in there for more answers to your questions and best of luck to you.
trish6hundred
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#4
As much as the doctors annoy me, I do endorse getting a proper sleep study done if you can.

As to how much benefit you would get - well mileage varies as they say.
For me it was startling the difference - night and day - turn on the switch fantastic.
Still early days but I am a real convert to the hose.

I have read on forums where others have struggled and not seen real benefit but not me - even the titration study where they truss you up like a science experiment was fantastic. - The night itself sucked, and I thought I didn't sleep at all, but when I got home I want all day and all the next day before the tiredness got me again.
I have since approached it as I am going to make it work regardless after those teasers because I am completely over feeling too tired all the time.

Sounds like the resmed test ran the machine locked on the minimum pressure, to measure the number of apneas. - you need to see if they will loan you one to run on auto to see how it feels when it is treating the apnoeas instead of just measuring them.

Do some reading on this board as it certainly appears you have a case of OSA and CPAP will help with that and reducing the issues to just half as many CA events is a great start. I have read from others how controlling the OA's helped reduce the centrals as well, but its a real mixed bag there and you just have to give it a go. Hence getting a second hand machine might not be silly.

I bought a second hand machine from secondwindcpap - google them. They have some really good deals but then you usually kiss any health fund rebates goodbye.
If you are not going to do a study then you definitely need a machine that will let you access the nightly data and download it into your PC. You also probably should get an auto machine so you can set a range and let the machine figure it out for you.

Good luck - whatever you do, do not just let it slide!

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#5
joesetx, welcome, my advice is your health is much more important than money, I'm lucky because I could afford to buy my machine and spent the $2,500 on it and knowing what I know now I would have paid double that, actually I would have paid anything I had to. After 48 years of going through this the last 2 years have been the best of my life. All my illness's have lifted and I go to the gym everyday and walk every night. A bit over two years ago I was dying. I think the Resmed home study would probably not be as accurate as a proper sleep study so your sleep apnea could actually be worse. Do something about it and get whatever machine you can, that is my advice, good luck.
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#6
joesetx: I have seen CPAP machines on Craigslist that were nearly new (the patient gave up after using it a couple of times) for a fraction of what they cost new. Not telling you what to do, just saying...
To err is human, but to really mess things up, you need a computer.
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#7
craigslist is a good source. Just be careful, buy local, and meet the seller at a place familiar to you with access to electricity so you can test the machine.

Do your research. Here's a good place to start: http://www.apneaboard.com/wiki/index.php...ne_choices
Sleepster
Apnea Board Moderator
www.ApneaBoard.com


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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#8
(09-08-2013, 12:21 AM)alby_c Wrote: Sounds like the resmed test ran the machine locked on the minimum pressure, to measure the number of apneas. - you need to see if they will loan you one to run on auto to see how it feels when it is treating the apnoeas instead of just measuring them.

ApneaLink™ Plus is a home screening test. Much cheaper than a full sleep study.

http://www.resmed.com/us/products/apneal...clinicians

Membership in the Advisory Member group should not be understood as in any way implying medical expertise or qualification for advising Sleep Apnea patients concerning their treatment. The Advisory Member group provides advice and suggestions to Apnea Board administrators and staff on matters concerning Apnea Board operation and administrative policies - not on matters concerning treatment for Sleep Apnea. I think it is now too late to change the name of the group but I think Voting Member group would perhaps have been a more descriptive name for the group.
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#9
I would not pay $1,500 for a sleep study! That's too much with insurance. I used to think you needed a sleep study and sleep doc and you should keep them in the loop of your health care. Those of us that are cpap nerds handle everything, except for the prescriptions ourselves. For the price of the study you could buy a nice machine. You already have a diagnosis. If the doc will write you a prescription you could pay out of pocket for the gear (will insurance pay for a machine?- depends on what the doc says I guess).
Good luck,
Mary
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#10
(09-07-2013, 10:42 PM)joesetx Wrote: My wife who is a nurse told me that I sometime stop breathing while sleeping and snore loudly.
I am a 55 year old man and overweight at 180 lbs and 5' 7".

My family doctor referred me to a sleep clinic but even with blue/cross my out of pocket cost for a sleep study would be $1,500.
I already know I have sleep Apnea. The study seemed like a very expensive way to tell me something I already know.

Last week I did a home test using the Resmed apnea link plus. I returned the test equipment and they phoned with the results and also emailed me the report
When the results were available they indicated mild to moderate apnea with both obstructive and central events.

Here are the numbers

AHI 17

Aeneas were
Obstructive 56%
Central 44%

--------------------
I have had chronic insomnia for decades and need meds to get to sleep. These may be a source of some of the centrals.

How much benefit would I get from CPAP?

The general experience of those around me is that after a diagnostic study and a follow up study the out of pocket expense, with blue cross, is $3,000.
Half the people I have talked to are very pleased with their CPAP therapy and the other half gave up after a short while.

Could really use some advice from those with real experience.
One thing to consider is what can happen without treatment for apnea. You can develop all kinds of medical problems, heart related problems being one of them. For me, I wouldn't even think about not using my machine and I monitor the stats each day as I just started on a different CPAP machine.

I had BCBS when I got my first CPAP machine and I never ever had to pay anywhere near the amount you are talking about. Each provider has an allowed amount that BCBS will pay (per a contract they have with the provider). I would recommend contacting your insurance company or the provider and ask them where they are getting their numbers from.

I caught a DME provider fraudulently charging me $70 more than they were supposed to and the insurance company reimbursed me for some of the extra money that I was charged. You have to be very careful with what the providers tell you. Go to their billing department and ask questions. Don't believe everything they tell you and also tell them you will pay your portion once the insurance pays or tell them you will pay them $5 per month until your insurance pays and you get your EOB and then you will go from there. HOpe this helps.
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