• Site Supporter

Shortness of Breath During the Day

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


Shortness of Breath During the Day

Postby camelot » Fri Jul 09, 2010 6:36 pm

Hi, I am a new member here, and was recently diagnosed with moderate to severe sleep apnea, via a sleep study. I am still considering my option here (CPAP, appliance etc), but had a broader question for the forum. The symptom that sent me to the doctor was shortness of beath during any level if physical exertion during the day. While not particularly atheletic, I am not overly obese (OK just a little heavy) at 205 lbs and 6', and am pretty active what with work, home renovations and 4 kids. I noticed last year while coaching kids soccer that I had very little wind, and this has progressed to where even trotting up a flight of stairsa leaves me breathing heavily.

My sleep doctor is convince that sleep apnea is the cause of this, but I not sure how poor breathing during the night could be compromising my breathing next afternoon. I have had a chest XRay, and some blood work done which was all good.

My question for the forum is...
Did other people experience worsening daytime shortness of breath prior to their diagnosis, and did using CPAP or other treatments solve the problem?
camelot
 
Posts: 2
Joined: Fri Jul 09, 2010 6:21 pm

Postby Vicki » Fri Jul 09, 2010 9:57 pm

Hi Camelot and Welcome to the Forum!

(I must digress a bit. I live near LA and my condo complex is called Camelot. It was the site of a zoo call "Jungle Land" where all the Hollywood animals use to be kept. I hear my complex is called Camelot because it was the camel lot). :-D

Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA) is about a lot more than fatigue or being tired. The greatest effect OSA has on our bodies is that it trashes our cardiovascular system. Aside for getting your OSA treated, did your doctor recommend you see a cardiologist? Maybe your doctor is thinking you are out of breath simply because you have a few extra pounds (you will see below that untreated OSA causes weight gain). Since it is impossible to know what he was thinking, you ought to give him a call and leave a message asking why he thinks you are out of breath. Is it because he thinks your weight is causing it or does he have concerns that your cardiovascular system is not in the best shape? It sounds like you have an excellent doctor to catch it like he did, but you still have to be a well educated and strong self-advocate if you have this disorder.

I have listed some effects of untreated OSA at the end and the link is to a literature review that I have here on the forum.

The Cardiovascular and Metabolic Effects of OSA

Keep posting your progress and keep asking questions!

Vicki

The effects of untreated obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) are severe and systemic. Some of them are; increased blood pressure, increased risk of heart attack and stroke (from the constant cycling in and out of hypoxia and increased blood pressure), heart arrhythmias, nocturia (because the increased pressure in the right heart ventricle makes the body think there is too much blood volume so urine is produced), headaches (probably from the hypoxia), fatigue (duh), memory and concentration problems, weight gain (sleep deprivation causes weight gain for several physiological reasons, one being the alteration of the hormones leptin and ghrelin), apnea induced seizures, there is a link to diabetes, there is a link to GERD, night sweats, depression, anxiety (each apneic event is a true suffocation and elicits the "Fight or Flight" adrenalin response), Fibromyalgia-like symptoms, impotence, relationship and job issues, car accidents, etc.

Also, keep in mind that there is no stereotypical OSA patient. There are men and women, thin and thick, old and young (see our pediatric forum), fit and not so fit. And, in one study of 405 men and women OSA patients, 30% did not even snore.
Being defeated is often a temporary condition. Giving up is what makes it permanent.
Marilyn Vos Savant

That which does not kill you makes you stronger-Friedrich Nietzsche
Friedrich must of had apnea.
User avatar
Vicki
Moderator
 
Posts: 6395
Joined: Tue May 31, 2005 8:21 pm
Location: Southern California
Machine: DeVilbiss IntelliPAP
Mask: Fisher & Paykel Flexifit 431
Humidifier: Rarely as needed
Year Diagnosed: 1999

Postby camelot » Sat Jul 10, 2010 1:15 am

Thanks for the quick response Vicky. As part of this I have had a Cardias Stress test which was all clear. My Dr seems pretty fixed that the apnea is the cause of the breath shortage, no particular discussion around weight loss (I actually decided to take on weigh loss myself and have dropped around 8lbs, with another 5 to go to get to 200 lbs which seems about right for me) or other indirect causes. My Dr is pretty fixed on me going on CPAP but I don't really see this as a long term option, as

a) I typically sleep on my stomach and the mask will interfere with that
b) I tried it for the night at a sleep center and found it claustrophobic and uncomfortable
c) I also have issues with my nose with chronic nose bleeds. Any dryness (such as an airplane) will typically set it off

I have also visited an ENT for the nose and he said that it was a case of the capillaries being very close to the surface of the cartilage which cracks very easily. I typically have a minor bleed every day, and any dryness cause some seepage, which in turn blocks my nose entirely.

So I am looking into dental appliance to see if this will help or considering surgery. What am trying to find out is if there is a specific connection between my breathing symptoms and my sleep apnea, and is it a common side effect, or do I need to look deeper into it

I did have one other question, that may seem a little odd. Abut once a week or so I have what sounds similar to how people are describing night time events. I will have a sudden startle and sharp involentary intake of breath. often followed by a fit of coughing. All of this happend during the day during normal activity, reading walking, talking to people etc. again is this something that is commonly experienced by those with sleep apnea?

Thanks for all your help, I choose the name Camelot because I always liked the King Arthur tale, now I'm stuck with an image of a "Used Camel Lot" on a dusty street in Hollywood! Hopefully they did a though clean up before building the condo's!
camelot
 
Posts: 2
Joined: Fri Jul 09, 2010 6:21 pm

Postby Vicki » Sat Jul 10, 2010 1:54 am

camelot wrote:a) I typically sleep on my stomach and the mask will interfere with that.

There are quite a few people here who sleep on their stomachs. Sometimes I sleep on my stomach but I usually sleep on my side. Forget everything you think you might know about OSA.

camelot wrote:b) I tried it for the night at a sleep center and found it claustrophobic and uncomfortable

You tried one mask for one night. There are at least 20 masks on the market. Besides using a mask that doesn't make you feel claustrophobic (and there are lots), there are desensitization techniques if you absolutely require them. I am sure that you give something which is important to you (and this should be for all of the reasons above), more than a few hours.

camelot wrote:c) I also have issues with my nose with chronic nose bleeds. Any dryness (such as an airplane) will typically set it off.

That is why PAP have humidifiers, so that doesn't happen.

camelot wrote:So I am looking into dental appliance to see if this will help or considering surgery.

You will need to be very informed if you choose an appliance or surgery. Be sure to see a dentist whose specialty is dental sleep medicine. For moderate to severe apnea, a multiphasic surgical approach is usually required using a protocol developed at Stanford, the gold standard in OSA treatment. Put UPPP in the Google toolbar on the left side to see posts about the procedure you will start with.

camelot wrote:I did have one other question, that may seem a little odd. Abut once a week or so I have what sounds similar to how people are describing night time events. I will have a sudden startle and sharp involentary intake of breath. often followed by a fit of coughing. All of this happend during the day during normal activity, reading walking, talking to people etc. again is this something that is commonly experienced by those with sleep apnea?

This sounds like a central apnea, where your brain forgets to tell you to breathe. Did your sleep study show any central apneas? Definitely talk to your sleep doctor about this.

Thanks for all your help, I choose the name Camelot because I always liked the King Arthur tale, now I'm stuck with an image of a "Used Camel Lot" on a dusty street in Hollywood! Hopefully they did a though clean up before building the condo's!
Sorry about that :-D

Vicki
Being defeated is often a temporary condition. Giving up is what makes it permanent.
Marilyn Vos Savant

That which does not kill you makes you stronger-Friedrich Nietzsche
Friedrich must of had apnea.
User avatar
Vicki
Moderator
 
Posts: 6395
Joined: Tue May 31, 2005 8:21 pm
Location: Southern California
Machine: DeVilbiss IntelliPAP
Mask: Fisher & Paykel Flexifit 431
Humidifier: Rarely as needed
Year Diagnosed: 1999

Postby helpingzzz » Sat Jul 10, 2010 5:14 am

Fabulous answer Vickie!

Don't give up too quick. There are many different masks, from many different companies designed for many different types of people and faces.

Nightly humidification could actually help your bleeding nose. Its kind of an odd thought, but its possible. At least try to give it trial run as MOST people take two to three weeks to get comfortable with CPAP at home.

Oral devises are not as successful as CPAP and are usually only used for patients that have Mild to Moderate Sleep Apnea.

Surgery is usually a last choice option because its painful, expensive and only 50% successful.
Many patients who opt for UPPP see an improvement but eventually end up on CPAP anyways.

WHY?! Because your airway has the potential to collapse in more than one place. UPPP only addresses the area of current collapse. CPAP addresses the entire airway and can be adjusted to fit your needs as your OSA improves or worsens.

It's in no means perfect, but they've really come a long way in trying to address its issues. Some people loose the weight while using CPAP and eventually stop needing it!

(In case no one mentioned it, OSA and Weight gain are linked. The body will replace the energy it is not getting from sleep by craving more food and decreasing your metabolism. Which in turn makes loosing weight harder and gaining easier!
helpingzzz
 
Posts: 11
Joined: Sat Jul 10, 2010 3:47 am

Postby librarylady » Sat Jul 10, 2010 6:52 am

You might also want to visit a pulmonologist about the shortness of breath issue. There are many things besides OSA that could cause it, some of which are quite serious.

I sleep on my stomach most nights. It is absolutely doable. Getting used to CPAP takes time and perseverance. Lots of people initially feel WORSE at first, and want to quit, but that is why the folks on this forum are so great--they can get you through the things that bother you about the therapy and make it sucessful.

Humidifiers are beautiful things. Even on nights when I am stuffy from allergies or a cold, after a few minutes on my nice, filtered, humidified air, the stuffiness goes away. Also, I believe there are saline sprays to moisturize your nasal passages, so you may want to give one a try.

Attitude is everything with CPAP, as it is in all of life. If you tell yourself you can't do it, for whatever reason, you won't get very far. Identify the obstacles, let the forum help you over them, but don't give up before you even get started.
"Do, or do not. There is no try." ~Yoda

Diagnosed in Nov. 2008
AHI=56, O2 desats to 70's
Respironics Pro M Series with Heated humidification
EncoreViewer
ComfortGel Nasal and FFM masks
User avatar
librarylady
 
Posts: 152
Joined: Sat Dec 20, 2008 11:23 am

Postby CrohnieToo » Sat Jul 10, 2010 9:40 am

And - there is silent reflux, NERD and GERD. The reflux acid can do unpleasant things to the lungs and airways.
ResScan 3.10 - Resmed S8 ResLink & oximeter
ConTec CMS-50D+ oximeter - Philips EverFlo 5L Oxygen Concentrator
PR SystemOne BPAP Auto w/Bi-Flex & Humidifier - EncorePro 2.2.14.0
User avatar
CrohnieToo
 
Posts: 7943
Joined: Mon Mar 20, 2006 9:18 pm
Location: Mid-Michigan
Machine: Resmed S8 VPAP Auto
Mask: Resmed Quattro FX Small
Humidifier: Resmed H3i
Year Diagnosed: 2006

Postby SleepyToo » Sat Jul 10, 2010 10:07 am

And - there is nonacidic or weakly acidic reflux that can cause symptoms of heartburn, even in patients who are being treated with proton pump inhibitors. Although the TV ads (in the US at least) would have you believe that acid is the cause of heartburn, it is not. The cause of the reflux is a temporary weakening of the muscle at the bottom of the esophagus (the feeding tube). The refluxing liquid can do unpleasant things to the lungs and airways.

Oh, and Vicki - I got a Hybrid mask yesterday that comes with 3 sizes of mouth piece, 3 sizes of pillows. They also tell you that you can separate the pillows. According to my calculations, that makes a total of 18 different combinations with this one mask. So, did you miss a zero off your figure of 20 masks?! Or is it a couple of zeroes?
SleepyToo
Philadelphia Area
Diagnosed September 2009, Respironics System One w/ C-flex and humidifier
Aloha nasal pillows
Not a medical professional, just a patient with severe OSA (31) who has done a lot of reading.
SleepyToo
 
Posts: 1066
Joined: Thu Sep 17, 2009 6:36 pm
Location: North of Philadelphia
Machine: PR System One
Mask: Resmed Swift FX
Humidifier: Yes, integral with PRS1
Year Diagnosed: 2009

Postby librarylady » Sat Jul 10, 2010 11:17 am

True about the reflux. I have LPRD and it makes my asthma worse, which makes me wheeze and cough more. The worsening asthma is what originally led both to the ENT (dx LPRD) and the sleep study (dx OSA). It is a vicious cycle. So many times one problem is made worse by another. So please get it checked out!
"Do, or do not. There is no try." ~Yoda

Diagnosed in Nov. 2008
AHI=56, O2 desats to 70's
Respironics Pro M Series with Heated humidification
EncoreViewer
ComfortGel Nasal and FFM masks
User avatar
librarylady
 
Posts: 152
Joined: Sat Dec 20, 2008 11:23 am

Postby Vicki » Sat Jul 10, 2010 2:49 pm

I also want to say that this is a support forum for about 80% of people who are simply looking for information and never post and the 20% who are having problems and do post. Therefore, you get the erroneously biased perception that everyone who uses a PAP has trouble in the beginning but that simply is not the case. Most people are off living their happy CPAP lives and have no need to get help.

So again, attitude is everything. When people post with a negative attitude they sabotage themselves and of course they have problems. If you assume everything will work, you will be off to a much better start. I am not saying everything will be perfect. We all have to tweak things. But 99.9% of issues are tweakable and fixable. If you get glasses, you have to have them adjusted.

The most you think of this as not a big deal, the more you try to understand the positive effects it will have on your health and quality of life, the more you forget about it and get out there and live your life, the better off you will be.

Vicki
Being defeated is often a temporary condition. Giving up is what makes it permanent.
Marilyn Vos Savant

That which does not kill you makes you stronger-Friedrich Nietzsche
Friedrich must of had apnea.
User avatar
Vicki
Moderator
 
Posts: 6395
Joined: Tue May 31, 2005 8:21 pm
Location: Southern California
Machine: DeVilbiss IntelliPAP
Mask: Fisher & Paykel Flexifit 431
Humidifier: Rarely as needed
Year Diagnosed: 1999

Postby Vicki » Sat Jul 17, 2010 6:21 am

Josh,

Post your question as an new topic so we don't take over Camelot's original post and thread with something new. Plus, people are more likely to see it as a new topic rather buried in a post they might have already read..

Vicki
Being defeated is often a temporary condition. Giving up is what makes it permanent.
Marilyn Vos Savant

That which does not kill you makes you stronger-Friedrich Nietzsche
Friedrich must of had apnea.
User avatar
Vicki
Moderator
 
Posts: 6395
Joined: Tue May 31, 2005 8:21 pm
Location: Southern California
Machine: DeVilbiss IntelliPAP
Mask: Fisher & Paykel Flexifit 431
Humidifier: Rarely as needed
Year Diagnosed: 1999

Postby josh87 » Sat Jul 17, 2010 8:16 am

Thank you Vicky for your quick response, i just signed up for this, and didn't know any better, and sorry if I posted in the wrong place ;)
That being said, I did some research on a painkiller i took a few times in the past few weeks, and I believe now that I am suffering from a side effect from opiates, called respiratory depression. It all makes sense now, and I believe I will live, although if it keeps up for another week or so I will be going to see a doctor. Thank you again, and may your life be great! ;)

Josh
josh87
 
Posts: 2
Joined: Sat Jul 17, 2010 3:22 am



  • Site Supporter

  • Similar topics
    Replies
    Views
    Author

Return to SLEEP APNEA HELP!

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: Google Feedfetcher, Thomasbow, Yahoo [Bot] and 0 guests

  • Site Supporter