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Can use of CPAP cause ear/sinus pain and how to handle it?

This area is for CPAP Mask and CPAP Machine Related Questions used in the treatment of Sleep Apnea.

Can use of CPAP cause ear/sinus pain and how to handle it?

Postby jenny949 » Sat Jan 21, 2006 12:32 pm

I got my machine and a mask that "worked" in about early September, but didn't get the hang of it and only used it about once every week or so. [Mirage Swift Nasal Pillows and CPAP with humidifier.] Then in October, desperate as ever, I discovered this website and started reading all sorts of helpful posts which gave me the encouragement that I could really make it work. So, I got in a couple of good weeks and then started getting ear pain, which eventually developed into a full-blown sinus infection. Unfortunately, their was nothing my doctor could do for me until it developed into the full-blown infection. I don't know if either the ear pain or the sinus infection is related to using the machine, because I've always had sinus trouble, but not ear trouble.

So, basically, I stopped using the machine until after that was resolved because I didn't want to make it worse--that took about 6-8 weeks. Once my infection had cleared up on an antibiotic, I came back and got more suggestions from the website, and restarted using my machine nightly -- the bad thing is, I'm getting ear and sinus pain again. So here's what I'm wondering: is the ear/sinus problem common? and If I "flush" out my nose with the mixture I've read about on this website (salt, karo syrup, etc), might I prevent myself from getting another sinus infection?
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Postby cherylAT » Sat Jan 21, 2006 3:27 pm

Hi Jenny,
I had some ear pain too, I noticed that I needed to pop my ears a few times because of it. I'm thinking that maybe the force of air is too strong? The sleep study people set me at a 13. Jenny, you could ask the medical equipment store where you got yours about that, they might know more about it than your doctor!
Nothing special, just little old me! -CherylAT
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Joined: Sat Jan 21, 2006 3:01 pm
Location: Offutt AFB, Nebraska

Postby Okie » Sun Jan 22, 2006 9:59 am

I also have ear problems, Had tubes years prior to cpap. I have always had problems with ear congestion. The only things I have to offer are,
Find a good decongestant/antihistimine type medication to take on a regular basis (allegra/singulair/benedryl - are some I have used)
I also use rhinocort nasal steriodal spray, I used flonase for the first year. Both work well to reduce allergy/swelling in the sinus.
Lots of humidity - which keeps the nose/throat tissue healthy.
If you have a high pressure, use the "kind to the ears" ramp feature on your cpap.
My sleep physician said constant snoring, irritates and swells the tissure at the base of the eustachian tube, making it more difficult to drain. He said regular use of cpap should have the long term effect of improving ear congestion.
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Location: Oklahoma

Postby jenny949 » Sun Jan 22, 2006 8:26 pm

Thanks for your input. I'll call the allergy doctor and see what he can do for me.
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Joined: Sat Jan 14, 2006 6:53 pm

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