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help me interpret my results please!
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sleepyincanada Offline

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Post: #1
help me interpret my results please!
Hello,

I did a sleep study and the results are severe supine related obstructive apnea with minimal oxygen desaturation. I was sent for testing by a dentist who is trying to sell me a mouth device for several thousand dollars, and money's very tight right now. So I want to be prepared before I see him again.

My issue is that I never sleep on my back. I already know I have apnea when falling asleep on my back, that's how bad it is. When sleeping on my side, my total A+H index is 2.9. I've been googling around, but can't figure out if that's good or bad. I also don't know what are the important stats from this whole confusing summary I got. For example, they say my AHI was moderately elevated, but I don't know if that's just a useless average based on my very high apnea in the supine position, and possibly (?) no problem at all when sleeping on my side.

Any help you can give me, I would appreciate it!

PS: This dentist says CPAC is terrible, people hate it, and I would be nuts not to do the mouth guard if I can. But he doesn't deal with CPACs so I'm suspicious!
07-26-2013 09:00 AM
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trish6hundred Offline

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Post: #2
RE: help me interpret my results please!
Hi sleepyincanada,
WELCOME! to the forum.!
I would be suspicious, too. The dentist would say that CPAP isn't good if he thinks you would buy a mouth guard. From what I have read, They don't have a really good track record. There have been some people that have used mouth guards and have had fairly good results but for the most part, they aren't the best way, IMHO.
There is some information here on the board in different threads about mouth guards that you might take a look at.
CPAP can take lots of time and PATIENCE,to get used to but it's the better way to go, especially if you get a data-capable machine so you can really see what's going on with your therapy.
Hang in there for more responses to your post.
Best of luck to you on your decision.

trish6hundred
07-26-2013 09:13 AM
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givememoresleep Offline

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Post: #3
RE: help me interpret my results please!
(07-26-2013 09:00 AM)sleepyincanada Wrote:  Hello,



total A+H index is 2.9

Any help you can give me, I would appreciate it!

PS: This dentist says CPAC is terrible, people hate it, and I would be nuts not to do the mouth guard if I can. But he doesn't deal with CPACs so I'm suspicious!

A total A+H index of 2.9 is actually good, as anything <5 is considered under control when using a CPAP. I would take your sleep study results to a actual sleep Dr for a second opinion.
07-26-2013 12:35 PM
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Tez62 Offline

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Post: #4
RE: help me interpret my results please!
Sleepyincanada, welcome, AHI is the the way they measure your severity of sleep apnea, 0-5 is normal, 5-15 mild, 15 - 30 moderate and 30 plus servere. It is the average number of times per hour you stop breathing for 10 secs or more. 2.9 sounds ok, I would get that double checked as that means you don't have SA, if that is the case you probably don't even need a mouthguard, I think your dentist is ripping you off and he doesn't know what he is talking about regards to CPAP, so I would be cautious about anything he says. Can I ask what your symptoms are that made you do a sleep study and I would get the sleep study proper evaluated by a sleep specialist like givememoresleep suggested, not by a dentist. The other things you can look at if it is only 2.9 is things like weight loss if you need it, more exercise and just general health, you may already be doing those things. Just investigate it more as SA gets worse not better and the associated illness's it can cause are not something you want, keep us updated.
(This post was last modified: 07-26-2013 04:04 PM by Tez62.)
07-26-2013 04:01 PM
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sleepyincanada Offline

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Post: #5
RE: help me interpret my results please!
thanks for your responses, everyone.

i guess what i'm struggling with is that i don't seem to have apnea when i'm sleeping on my side. but i have severe apnea (almost 54 on the index) when sleeping on my back. I don't think I roll over on my back at night, but my husband thinks I probably do. Maybe I need to just try the equipment to see whether I sleep better, although it seems like CPAP comes with a huge learning curve, where you feel worse before you feel better...?

Symptoms that brought me to the sleep test: exhaustion, burned out adrenals not getting better with treatment, shortness of breath, and a dentist who looked in my mouth and said uh oh, I would bet a lot of money that you have apnea (he also knew right away that i had worn braces with a headgear as a kid, and thought that had contributed greatly to the apnea).
07-26-2013 05:45 PM
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oak Offline

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Post: #6
RE: help me interpret my results please!
based on the information you gave, i am concerned that you havent gotten enough information from a sleep doctor or even your family doctor about the sleep study results. i would pursue a follow up appt before buying a mouth device from a dentist. if your AHI is indeed only 2.9 when sleeping on your side, there are things you can do such as insert tennis balls into a shirt or purchase a similar contraption, to keep you from sleeping on your back. However, if that doesnt work and you do sleep on your back, and depending on what your doctor says, I would strongly consider CPAP. The information on this and other forums doesnt speak well of dental devices for people with severe apnea.

were there recommendations in the sleep study report as to whether CPAP would be indicated?Huh
07-26-2013 06:13 PM
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PaulaO2 Offline
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Post: #7
RE: help me interpret my results please!
Here is what I suggest.

Get an oximeter. You can get a cheap one from Supplier #19 in the Supplier's List (link at top of every page).
http://www.apneaboard.com/forums/Thread-CPAP-Supplier-List

Follow the directions on our wiki page on how to get data from it.
http://www.apneaboard.com/wiki/index.php?title=SpO2_software

Take a day and wear it while sitting around watching TV or some other non-aerobic activity. Note what your average O2 rate is.

Use it every night for ten nights, getting the data from it every morning. Take notes before you go to sleep (good day, bad day, high stress day, fun day, new food, scary movie, etc) and when you first wake up (feel great, feel lousy, wanna go back to sleep, etc) for each sleep session.

Then, take an old tshirt and, with your spouse's help, figure out the best place to put it to keep you from sleeping on your back. Most people find it best to be right between the shoulder blades. Once you find that spot, sew a pocket and put the tennis ball (or two) in it.

Use the oximeter for another ten nights, getting that data each morning, too. Take those same notes but this time note how many times you remember waking up because those dang balls were jabbing you in the spine.

Compare the data. Were there a lot of O2 dips (below 90) before the tennis balls? Or are they the same? How often do you go below what your daytime norm is?

My bet is you are sleeping on your back but, since you are asleep, you don't know you are. I think nearly everyone have obstructive apnea events when they sleep on their back, but not everyone has an AHI of 59 when they do. You say the sleep study says you had minimal oxygen dips during the study. That's a good thing. It may make your little 20 day study more difficult. But it will give you real life data to help determine if you want to go further with it.

I don't know your dentist. All I know is what you have told us. And from that, I can tell you he is trying to sell you something you may not need. It's is false that everyone hates CPAPs. I actually love mine. I love that it is extending my life span. Yeah, sure, it's a pain in the arse at times but the benefits far outweigh the rest. With dental devices, there's no way to tell if it is working except to go with how you feel. You could wear an oximeter again for it but unless you have a reading of more than one night's sleep without it, you don't have a baseline. My personal opinion of that dentist is he is a quack who is pushing a product.

Do you need a CPAP? Who knows. Did they hook you up to one during your sleep study or did they just gather the data without one?

For far less than that dental appliance, you could get a gently used or open box autoPAP from Supplier #2 and use it for a month or more. Gather data from it and see how it goes. Or you can use the tennis ball trick and just never sleep on your back again.

PaulaO2
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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.
07-26-2013 06:23 PM
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sleepyincanada Offline

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Post: #8
RE: help me interpret my results please!
Thanks Paula -- that tennis ball idea is genius! It will help me figure out whether I do sleep on my back, and sounds like it will prevent it too!

Oak -- thanks for your input as well. I made an appt with the sleep clinic for next week, so I will learn a lot more I'm sure.

I'm learning a lot from you guys...many thanks!
07-26-2013 09:13 PM
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Tez62 Offline

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Post: #9
RE: help me interpret my results please!
sleepyincanada, we are not drs or dentists on here but your dentist doesn't know what he is talking about in regards to sleep apnea. In the majority of case obstructive SA is caused by either the collapsing of the throat or the tongue relaxing and covering the throat that is what causes the snoring noises. In a lot of cases it is hereditary, mainly from the mothers side. Central SA is basically when the brain tells the nervous system not bother to breathe. I have never heard of braces on teeth causing SA. As I said in previous post and the others have suggested to, go see a proper sleep specialist with your results. I also agree with all the things Paula has said.
07-27-2013 03:59 AM
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Sleepster Offline
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Post: #10
RE: help me interpret my results please!
(07-26-2013 09:13 PM)sleepyincanada Wrote:  I'm learning a lot from you guys...many thanks!

If you have a AHI less than 5 then you don't need a CPAP machine or a dental appliance. On the other hand your symptoms indicate that you may be sleeping on your back and suffering from the effects of sleep apnea.

I agree that the tennis ball is a good idea.

I wonder what the dentist saw when he looked in your mouth? Maybe you have an issue with tonsils or adenoids.

I agree that a visit to a medical doctor may be warranted. Do not let anyone talk you into a more complicated surgery such as UUUP.

Your dentist is sort of correct in his claim that people don't like CPAP machines. The compliance rate is low. But that's a claim based on statistics. You may be one of the lucky ones who can easily tolerate it, one of the unlucky ones who can't, or somewhere in between in which case with determination and persistence you can be successful.

Again, statistically speaking, the chances are much greater that CPAP therapy will be more effective than a dental appliance.

Since your AHI is so high when supine, and the dental appliance so expensive, I would think that CPAP therapy is a better choice for you.

Sleepster
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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.
07-27-2013 11:35 AM
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