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Bipap Problems

This area is for Sleep Apnea questions and general Sleep Apnea Discussions.


Bipap Problems

Postby don43 » Tue May 04, 2010 8:36 am

I started bipap therapy four months ago and for a time all was going well and I actually started feeling better. After three months I started getting a stiff neck and then lung congestion. I was prescribed Mucinex for the lung congestion with no relief. I then starting feeling pressure in one ear similar to driving up a mountain and then an ear ache. I met with my sleep MD who told me to quit using the machine and sent me to a dentist for a sleep apnea dental device. However, the dentist doesn't know if the device is covered by my insurance. I am now waiting to hear the decision of the insurance company. It has been about two weeks now since I stopped using my bipap machine and at first I was sleeping pretty good but now I am aware I am having apneas again. I am disappointed because I really started to see some real benefits from the bipap therapy but my sleep MD said there are some people who just don't do well and I am one of them.

I made an appointment with an ENT to check out my ear problem and to try to confirm, or not. that it was caused by the bipap machine. My lung congestion has cleared. My stiff neck is much better. I would like a second opinion but unfortunately there is only one sleep doc in my area. Comments appreciated, thanks.
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Postby CrohnieToo » Tue May 04, 2010 10:41 am

See an ENT and discuss the ear problem w/him. Quite likely you will be able to use your BPAP again, maybe starting at lower pressure ranges, maybe just lower EPAP, and then maybe being able to gradually build up to your titrated pressures again after time.

I often have a problem w/PAP and my ears when sitting up but not when laying down. I can't watch TV w/my PAP and mask because of this. Weird, eh?
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Postby Mrs Rip Van Winkle » Tue May 04, 2010 10:26 pm

I have issues with the left ear...have had this for about 3 years. I find that raising my humidity level & irrigating the sinuses help alot. I have been to the ENT..after going to the Internal Med Dr and the neuro. THe ENT did CT's with contrast of the ears...all looks fine but the Eustation Tube is not visible to him in the scan to determine if that is REALLY the issue...... I feel it is, it is dysfunctional and with the added humidity it clears to a point of bearable. I also have a deviated septum on that side...which I need to have 'repaired'. Took me about 2 1/2 years to figure this out.

I have not stopped using my machine...though my ear can often be annoying...I want to keep myself safe.... I also was told "well, then stop using it"...I know this was due to my major complaint to a Dr that was NOT a sleep specialist...and didn't know a heck of alot about SA. Granted, it all depends on the severity..and what out weighs what.
I'm only a sufferer, not a medical pro. What I post are my thoughts as a sufferer, not that of the ASAA. As a moderator on these forums I oversee the posting rules. This is the internet, always discuss what you read with your medical team.
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ear problems and bipap

Postby SleepyStar » Tue May 04, 2010 11:32 pm

Hi,
I have had chronic problems with my ear prior to my starting on BiPap in February. I live up at approx. 4500 ft, and drive down to a valley 5x/week for work. I have frequent ear infections, and pain and pressure in my ears due to the elevation change. I'm on daily allergy med and nasal spray.

Now that I'm on BiPap, I've had 3 ear infections since February. My primary doc has thought for quite some time that it's an eustachian tube issue. (I also have a difficult time flying on planes due to the pain with the elevation change.)

I told my pulmonary doc this and he just said he 'has the same problem', and did not offer any suggestions. If the problem persists, my primary may send me to an ENT. I don't know if there is anything that can be done.

I'm still using my bipap, as I feel that its a very important. But I'll keep checking this thread to see what other ear problems and possible solutions people have come up with!

Thanks All!
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SleepStudy x2: Sat:79% (without bipap), apnea/hypopnea episodes; Sleepstage I & II decreased, Stage III & IV increased, 'sleep architecture abnormal', RDI 1.7 on BiPap; NREM parasomnia; Fibromyalgia
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Postby CrohnieToo » Wed May 05, 2010 3:00 pm

To heck w/this "your primary may send you to an ENT"!!!! INSIST on a referral to an ENT now! Ear pain and aches are no fun AND you do NOT want to endanger or risk your hearing.

Given your history w/ear symptoms when changing elevations just to and from work and frequent ear infections is history enough to sound the alarm especially when you encounter it w/PAP therapy too.

Someone is dropping the ball here - either you or your primary care doctor.
ResScan 3.10 - Resmed S8 ResLink & oximeter
ConTec CMS-50D+ oximeter - Philips EverFlo 5L Oxygen Concentrator
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