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suddenly getting lots of leaks- advice please
#1
suddenly getting lots of leaks- advice please
I have been using APAP successfully for about 1 1/2 years and in the past 5 days I wake up not rested and the machine says I have a mask leak. The mask and tubing are unchanged. I tried a new mask (same model) and the same thing happens. This began when I was traveling and did not have distilled water so I temporarily changed the settings to accomodate not using the humidifier. When I resumed normal/regular settings I still have a leak (I cannot find from where) and bad sleep. 

When I went to load my Oscar data to attach to this message, I got an error message from the SD card. I will try to post Oscar data tomorrow. In the meantime, does anyone have suggestions about the leak problem?

Thanks in advance.
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#2
RE: suddenly getting lots of leaks- advice please
Just an FYI for future times when distilled water isn't available...Distilled water is only RECOMMENDED for use in the humidifier reservoir to make cleaning easier. You can safely use any clean, drinkable water available. It's not required. You may need to pay closer attention to the possibility of mineral buildup in the reservoir, which is easily cleaned.

I can't imagine any connection between the humidifier settings and your leak problem other than the reservoir may not be seated fully. 
Take a look at this mask fit info and see if anything helps.
 
How to achieve the perfect mask fit - GUARANTEED! | Apnea Board
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https://www.sleepfiles.com/OSCAR


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#3
RE: suddenly getting lots of leaks- advice please
Thank you for your reply. Just to clarify, I meant to say in my last post that I recently changed my hose (it's the exact same kind, I just bought a new one)...is it possible that it is defective?
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#4
RE: suddenly getting lots of leaks- advice please
It’s possible that it’s defective. 
Why did you need to replace the old one?
Try putting the old one back on if it’s usable and see if the problem persists.
My get-up-and-go musta got up and went.  Cool

Download OSCAR for your sleep data.  
https://www.sleepfiles.com/OSCAR


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#5
RE: suddenly getting lots of leaks- advice please
I reattached the original tube and I'm having the same leak issue (see OSCAR screenshot attached). 

I recently flew on an airplane with my CPAP machine and that's when this issue started. I put it in my roller bag and carried it onto the plane (did not gate check the bag). Maybe the machine got damaged? I'm just searching for any possible explanation.


Attached Files Thumbnail(s)
   
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#6
RE: suddenly getting lots of leaks- advice please
Because of the flat top of the leak, it appears you are having mouth leaking. Your mouth opens and the air rushes out.  

Some people use a full fade mask, tape their mouth, strap the chin up. How ever you find that keeps your mouth shut while you sleep.
Apnea (80-100%) 10 seconds, Hypopnea (50-80%) 10 seconds, Flow Limits (0-50%) not timed  Cervical Collar - Dealing w DME - Chart Organizing
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#7
RE: suddenly getting lots of leaks- advice please
I'm wearing a full face mask with nose pillow (I just corrected that in my profile), so the mask is covering my mouth and sits underneath my nose (so if my mouth is open the air should be going into it).
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#8
RE: suddenly getting lots of leaks- advice please
I'm still getting a lot of leaks and my sleep is poor (see attached results). I've tried a new mask (same type and brand), head gear (same type and brand), and tubing (same type and brand), and I even cut my beard back (ugh) to try to get a better mask fit. This problem started when I took my CPAP on an airplane last week and hasn't worked properly since, so unless this is a total coincidence it is thoroughly confusing me why this problem started happening at exactly that time. There is no visible damage to the machine or any of the parts. 

I also read the post recommended by upsman about how to achieve the perfect mask fit but there are a few important parts that aren't clear to me:
1. It suggests making incremental changes to mask fit until you don't feel any leaks. The problem is that I never "feel" the leaks in real time, so there is no immediate feedback that I'm getting about whether my mask is leaking or not.
2. How do I know that my leaks are coming from my mask (like staceyburke posted)? And once I determine that the leak is coming from my mask, how do I know what part of the mask it is coming from (i.e., how did staceburke know that it was coming from the top part of my mask)?

Any help you can offer would be SO appreciated! Thank you.


Attached Files Thumbnail(s)
   
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#9
RE: suddenly getting lots of leaks- advice please
If your leaks don't arouse you sufficiently to make you fully aware of them, and thus their true nature, then maybe whatever leaks there are are not the real problem. 

I'm trying to look at this objectively, with an open mind.  If your mask and other accessories are relatively new, the headgear isn't two years old and well-stretched, and you suddenly have leaks, it might be the way you have turned to using/wearing them.  As we go on through our therapy, some things change.  Those changes might alter the efficacy of the particular instrument, the therapy dialed into it, and the other apparatus for delivery to you may ultimately no longer be the best solution.

You may have to wear your apparatus when awake, and try to act like you're asleep.  Relax fully, and see how the system works for you.  You may immediately notice a condition developing, but depending on your head's orientation to your body, how well your mask seals, where your hose rests and if it gets pulled or snagged, that kind of thing.

It seems that, due to their long perimeter seal, full face masks have a higher propensity to develop a significant leak somewhere along their seal.  There is a higher probability, the greater that perimeter, for a slight detachment to 'amount to something.'

I agree that a full face mask should contain any mouth leakage, although those people often report a serious 'dry mouth' problem upon waking.  If that isn't the case with you, then maybe there is another problem altogether.
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#10
RE: suddenly getting lots of leaks- advice please
Thank you for your thoughtful reply. One important thing I've noticed: it feels like the machine is making it harder for me to exhale. I suspect that has something to do with my leakage problem. Is this an EPC issue? It's currently set at 3.
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