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Anyone ever get sick from their CPAP?

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Anyone ever get sick from their CPAP?

Postby ScottAB » Thu Sep 11, 2008 10:28 pm

Just wondering if anyone out there has ever gotten sick as a result of using their CPAP. I just got out of the hospital after 5 days from a bad pnuemonia. I am relativly young (34) and was feeling fine (no cold/ bronchitis...etc). Once day I just developed a pain under my left shoulder and a bad fever (104.6F) They tried oral antibiotics for two days then when it didn't get any better they admitted me.

I am "pretty" good at keeping my machine clean almost daily rinse of my components with a vinegar bath every other week or so....... Dr's can't peg what caused it and don't think that it was the CPAP but was just wondering what experiences all of you have out there.......
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Postby Bearded One » Thu Sep 11, 2008 11:56 pm

I have been using my CPAP for 14 years and I don't know that I got any sort of infections related to CPAP use. I have heard that I should clean my mask, but I very seldom do it; although I do keep my filters clean.
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Postby lynn543 » Fri Sep 12, 2008 3:29 pm

I prefer liquid chlorine bleach in cold water and soaking mask and airhose in it with some detergent as a wetting agent

I dont know about the possibility of mould, etc growing inside the CPAP, have never heard this discussed

Ive seen black mould in masks, nasty stuff, gives off spores
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during my many years of undiagnosed severe fatigue, no doctor ever asked me if I snored
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Postby RanMan » Fri Sep 12, 2008 4:12 pm

I am concerned about the possibility of contracting "Legionnaire's desease" from constant use of my CPAP.
I sent an e-mail to CDC in Atlanta and posed this question. I am waiting for their reply.

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Postby Magus » Sat Sep 13, 2008 1:16 pm

RanMan, I was thinking of exactly the same thing today. If you hear back from Atlanta can you make sure to post?
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Postby 5aces » Sun Sep 14, 2008 9:31 am

I view the mask the same way as my toothbrush- and I don't clean that everyday.

Replace the nasal pillows every 6 months,wash the hose out once a week,keep filters clean and good to go,I figure.
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Postby Grammie06 » Mon Nov 03, 2008 8:33 pm

I have been a CPAPer for about 2 years. During that time I've lost count of the sinus/nasal infections. Originally, I blamed the nasal pillows--maybe an allergic reaction? Then I changed to a nasal mask--well I wasn't getting them every month but every 3 months. The end of the rope has been reached. These infections are now bacterial and require at least 1 dose of the Z Pack to clear it up. Each infection is worse than the last.
The Dr asked me if others use my set up (yeah, right--I'm sharing the CPAP joy), do I clean it daily, weekly, etc all questions I have asked myself to no avail. I really can not go through another one of these infections. I will see the dr later this week and if she has no solution, I am going to stop CPAP. Although I am reading the info on GERD with interest and will bring that up during my discussion with her. #-o
Does anyone have any answers for me?
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Postby Vicki » Tue Nov 04, 2008 12:02 am

I emailed CDC in Sept. and here was their response:

"Thank you for your inquiry to CDC-INFO. Your request for information on acquiring Legionnaires' disease from a CPAP machine was copied to the CDCs National Center for Immunization and Respiratory Diseases (NCIRD). We are pleased to provide you with their additional input.

NCIRD is not aware of any journal articles or published reports of someone definitely acquiring Legionnaires' disease from a CPAP machine, although they do receive reports of Legionnaires' disease cases that have used their machines prior to becoming ill.

It is unclear if the machine is actually harboring the Legionella bacteria (and maybe causing the exposure) or if the population that regularly uses CPAP machines is at higher risk of developing the disease after any exposure in general (showers, faucets, etc.) due to underlying medical conditions which may affect breathing.
NCIRD recommends following manufacturer guidelines for cleaning and filling the machine. Usually this includes using sterile water in the machine and thoroughly cleaning the machine after each use (and allowing it to air dry).

Finally, your request that NCIRD directly post their response to the Sleep Apnea Support Forum's website has been forwarded to the appropriate CDC office.

Thank you for contacting CDC-INFO Contact Center. Please do not hesitate to call 1-800-CDC-INFO, e-mail cdcinfo@cdc.gov or visit http://www.cdc.gov if you have any additional questions.

CDC-INFO is a service of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR). This service is provided by Vangent, Inc. under contract to CDC and ATSDR.


Please visit CDC-INFOs Customer Satisfaction Survey and tell us about your recent experience with CDC-INFO. The survey results will help improve our services. The address for the survey is http://www.emtservices.org/cdcinfo/en/e ... survey.htm. Thank you.


[THREAD ID:1-1262PO] [SR No.:1-64115210]"
Being defeated is often a temporary condition. Giving up is what makes it permanent.
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That which does not kill you makes you stronger-Friedrich Nietzsche
Friedrich must of had apnea.
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Postby Bearded One » Tue Nov 04, 2008 10:00 am

I am very surprised to see that CPAP humidifiers could be associated with Legionnaires Disease. I guess that this is just one more reason for me to not use a humidifier.
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Postby sleeping_now » Tue Nov 04, 2008 4:57 pm

Bearded One wrote:I am very surprised to see that CPAP humidifiers could be associated with Legionnaires Disease. I guess that this is just one more reason for me to not use a humidifier.

You missed the line about emptying the reservoir and letting it dry. I think this makes a big difference. I don't use sterile water, but it might be a idea for those having a lot of colds. I've been a cpapper for a year and a half and have not had any more colds than before I got the machine.

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Postby Bearded One » Tue Nov 04, 2008 7:28 pm

I read it; I don't use a humidifier.
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legionnaires disease

Postby AllisonPerry83 » Tue Nov 04, 2008 10:46 pm

Did you also know that you can get legionnaires disease from the sprayers that spray our vegetables in the grocery store? There are multiple places you can contract it. As long as you keep your humidifier reservoir clean and use clean water you should have no issues regarding ANY water borne pathogens. Most outbreaks of most bacterial infections can be traced back to a lack of hygiene of some sort (ie hand washing, not disinfecting..). So just stay clean and you should be good to go.
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Postby lynn64 » Sun Nov 09, 2008 7:49 pm

I have also been suffering from sinus infections from the cpap for 3 years. The doctors refuse to believe that it is the machine. It got so bad I stopped useing it all summer. I had to be put on 1000 mg of antibiotics for 2 weeks or longer if necessary. With that and other treatments the infection went away, UNTIL they talked me into going back on the machine for my safety. I am at pressure 13, moderate sleep apnea, and I do feel better in other ways while on the machine, but it still doesn't help my fatigue or my fibromyalga, they tell me they may have to do surgery and I don't know if that is something I want to do.

Has anyone else had to have surgery for this problem?
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Postby summer1971 » Tue Jan 20, 2009 1:28 am

i have used cpap for about 7 years. i keep my equipment clean, use vinager and antibacterial dial soap as told by dr. i have two machines, one that stays at home and one that i travel with. i have forgot to empty my water in the home one and left and i do use distilled water everytime and came home after three or four days and that water will have red slime floating in it. i am sure bacteria grows in there. i get a new humidifier chamber twice a year and boil it like i would a baby bottle a couple of times a month because i am so sure that if it can develope red slime in just a couple of days after being used one night then i see no way that there is no bacteria, it is there, dr may not belive it, but it is there. i would not quit useing the cpap because of fear of bacteria though, i would just become more paticular about how clean and how i made it clean. for me i belive death could come sooner from no cpap than from bacteria.
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Nooks and Crannies and Red Slime

Postby Bobbydiv » Thu Jan 29, 2009 11:01 pm

I would really be interested in knowing what that red slime was. Summer1971, you sound like you clean your gear, probably the best out of anyone I've met, and for good reason. Some of the user manuals even say you can get meningitis using a CPAP. While I was reading the post here, I just realized though that there are three potential areas of a CPAP machine that has a humidifier that never gets cleaned.

Where the CPAP pushes air into the water box. This connection can get damp when you install the box after filling, diligently using distilled water.

Where the water box connects into the outlet port. This port can get wet when you install the water box after filling, plus it stays wet the next morning after you shut down and disconnect everything because of the moisture of the humidifier.

Last is the actual exit port where the flex hose connects to your CPAP w/ humidifier. Same principle, it's wet from applying humidity all night.

Now it's not a large amount of water, but think about it. It's a bedroom. Probably one of the darkest rooms in the house, used the least throughout the day with the least amount of air moving around. Have you ever hung your mask and/or hose on the headboard because you were running late and they were still wet that night? I've been on CPAP for a week and I've already had that happen once. I think there needs to be some in-depth studies done on machines. Swabs and water samples of hose, water boxes, and masks, not only easy to reach areas but the cracks and crevices too. Interesting topic.
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