The Secrets to Success using CPAP and Bilevel


Have courage. Be adventurous and Go for it! Overcome your fear."  
- Mrhelpful 

The sleep apnea machine is like driving a car. If you have learnt to drive a car or record a program from the television or as a diabetic to inject yourself with insulin then you can drive a sleep apnea machine. Learn The Secrets to Success using CPAP and Bilevel or BiPAP machines to enable you to have a great night's sleep and wake up feeling refreshed and energized each day! 

As the sleep specialists are not educating themselves and the patients, it will be up to you to educate yourself! More details are at the blog pages Why is CPAP Compliance Rate Low? and Secrets to Success: Answer is FREE.  

Obtain an understanding of the various sleep apnea machines including CPAP fixed pressure, Auto Adjusting CPAP pressure and Bilevel Auto Adjusting (BiPAP or BPAP). The Bilevel machine uses two pressures, one for inhale and one for exhale. It is an advanced version of the auto adjusting CPAP machine with extra features and is far superior to the other two machines mentioned enabling you to have a great night sleep. More details at CPAP Vs Bilevel Settings Example. 

Further information about the various machines and what the various numbers showing on your machine mean and what other sleep apnea users go through with their therapy can be obtained on the various sleep apnea forums. (Listed on right hand side) 

"Give a man a fish and you feed him for a day. Teach a man to fish and you feed him for a lifetime.” 
- Lao Tzu (Chinese philosopher – 600 – 470BC)

From my personal experience, it is much easier to breathe using a Bilevel Auto Adjusting machine than using a CPAP fixed or Auto Adjusting CPAP machine. The Bilevel machine is very smooth and it is a natural feeling when breathing. Your breathing can be in sync with the machine. From my experience, the Bilevel Auto Adjusting machine offers better comfort, compliance, therapy and sleep quality. 

From a practical point of view, the machines can be likened to televisions.

The CPAP fixed pressure machine is like the old black and white television.  
The Auto Adjusting CPAP machine is like the old colour television.  
The Bilevel Auto Adjusting machine is like a high definition colour television.

Which machine would you prefer to sleep with each night? 

Patients may be using the machines for 40 to 50 or more years which means that they may need to purchase up to 6 machines during their lifetime! Why do sleep specialists not let the patient have a great night’s sleep and wake up feeling refreshed and energized each day? The patient can have a high definition television sleep experience rather than the black and white television sleep experience with all the associated issues that many people are facing today. 

To be successful using the sleep apnea machine, I stopped many CPAP Side Effects and Issues using a Bilevel auto adjusting pressure machine. 

I asked a senior executive of a major equipment supplier what % of patients currently get issued with a bilevel machine and why more bilevel machines were not being issued to patients. 

The response may surprise many people:

“Currently, depending on Country, only 2% to 4% of total patients get issued with a bilevel machine. The medical specialists will not issue more bilevel machines as they fear that the machine will not work and that they will get sued!”

Why does the bilevel machine not work for the patient? As mentioned previously, many of the sleep medical specialists are not educating themselves and they do not truly understand how the bilevel machine works. 

This view is supported by comments made in a blog post by a sleep technician working in the sleep industry. Note the patient still had an AHI of nearly 20 after one month on BiPAP! As many would be aware, the specialists consider that someone with an AHI <5 as being treated.

Currently, the sleep medical specialists have made it very difficult to get a bilevel machine. They apply “rules of thumb” where you require high pressure of 15 cmH2O and/ or that you “fail” using CPAP and auto adjusting CPAP machines. However, many of the issues facing patients such as bad aerophagia are occurring at lower pressures than 15 cmH2O. For me personally, bad aerophagia was occurring with fixed pressure above 11 cmH2O. 

For these reasons, in 2014 I purchased out of pocket a used ResMed S9 VPAP Auto bilevel machine with low hours of use. The machine is absolutely fantastic and over time has stopped all the side effects and issues that I had using both the CPAP fixed pressure and auto adjusting CPAP machines with one exception. The exception is nasal congestion and nose bleeding. 

In addition, for those people with air coming out of the eye tear duct issue, additional steps may need to be taken to resolve this issue. Further details of how I overcome these issues are in blog posts Stop CPAP Nasal Congestion and Nose Bleeding and Air Through Eye Tear Duct.

The ResMed S9 VPAP Auto machine has been superseded by the ResMed S10 AirCurve VPAP machine. I understand that both machine algorithms may be pretty similar. On the blog page
Guide to Success using CPAP and Bilevel, I provide the Steps to take to succeed using a sleep apnea machine. 

Many people may be questioning the large cost of these machines. Used 2nd hand ResMed VPAP Auto machines can be purchased as well as other brands and machines such as Philips Respironics for a much lower price than buying a new machine. 

I have purchased a few second hand machines with low machine use hours from a company, Secondwind CPAP in the USA. If you live outside the USA, you should be able to purchase the machine without having to see a doctor and obtain a prescription and no sleep study is required. One of the machines I purchased only had 2 weeks of use or approximately 120 hours on the machine. This company as well as others are listed on a supplier list on one of the sleep apnea forums and its web address is as follows:  https://www.secondwindcpap.com

Buying the VPAP Auto bilevel machine was a huge leap of faith. I thought the machine would work great; however, at the time I had little knowledge of how the machine truly worked with all its various options. I had no way of knowing this until I actually used the machine each day. Also, there was the small matter of outlaying funds to buy the machine. The thought did occur that buying the bilevel machine could be a waste of money so I quickly put that thought aside and purchased the machine. 

Hence the quote: 

“Have courage. Be adventurous and Go for it! Overcome your fear.”  
- Mrhelpful

1 comment:

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