CPAP Use - Remedy for Stomach Bloating

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


Postby Grandma » Fri Mar 25, 2011 11:00 pm

Which works better for you, Crohnie?
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Re: CPAP Use - Remedy for Stomach Bloating

Postby Todzo » Sat Mar 26, 2011 11:49 am

proverbs3:24 wrote:I have been using my CPAP for about a month. Positive results - am very grateful. Do others struggle with stomach bloating? My CPAP is set at 12 because I have severe sleep apnea. Any remedies out there?


Hi proverbs!

I seem to only have this problem upon a pressure increase (for a day or two) and then once in a very long while. I am fascinated by the one who tells of a severe reaction to taking a muscle relaxant.

I am going this direction anyway so, on a whim and a guess, may I suggest core exercise (such as crunches or sit ups) and breathing controlled exercise (e.g. Pilates - Yoga). If there is enough tone in the abdominal core I am thinking it might equalize with a much smaller part of the inside of the stomach exposed. I really can see how things could tend to run away if inflation gets going.

I also had an even crazier idea of making an elastic band about 10" wide - adjusted to comfy and placed so that its lowest part touched where a belt would go. Again, if there is enough "tone" in the area I think inflation cannot really get started.

Please put all of this under "from a man who has not had sleep for a couple of days" because it is (I get creative but not necessarily practical).

Sweet dreams!

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Postby CrohnieToo » Sat Mar 26, 2011 11:57 am

I didn't have any problems w/aerophagia when using my nasal mask - but I also was NOT getting adequate therapy due to mouth leaks. A chin strap helped to reduce the leaks - but not enough 'cause I still leaked via the "lip flutters". PoliGrip Denture Cream did stop or reduce the "lip flutters" - BUT - it was a PITA to don mask, chin strap, denture cream on the lips. And then my pressures were raised again and even all that didn't stop the lip flutters. I gave up and went to the full face mask. And aerophagia gradually started.

I knew to keep my tongue tucked up to the roof my mouth behind my front teeth but w/the higher pressures even when awake air would start escaping from both back corners of my tongue/cheeks and then either the lip flutters or puffed cheeks to the point of forcing the lips open. Or I swallowed the air. You can imagine when I was asleep what was going on! No where for the air to go but up my nose, down my throat when the mask fit so well it didn't allow leaks. I SUSPECT that the bad nights are nights my nasal passages are a bit congested and my good nights w/no air swallowing or very minor air swallowing are the nights my nasal passages are good and clear.

I am on 02 supplementation a good part of the day as well as w/my PAP at night and since I don't have a humidifier when out and about on my portable 02 that my nasal passages get a bit dried out or irritated which causes the minor nasal congestion. Just enough to mess me up at night w/o my even being aware of it.

But I haven't discussed this w/my sleep pulmo since I seldom see him any more after all these years on PAP.
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Postby oldfartcg » Mon Mar 28, 2011 12:14 pm

I had a doctor tell me to get teh pressure reduced, apparently mime is set to auto, so the place I got it from said it wont help. as it would increase the pressure as needed. The only thing would be to set the starting out value lower. any thoughts, could this help the bloating?
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Postby Grandma » Mon Mar 28, 2011 12:29 pm

Seems to me that lowering the pressure would mean less effective handling of your apneas. Not sure how starting at a lower pressure would help since your machine will take you to the higher pressures as soon as you need it. What kind of doctor would recommend a lower pressure setting if your sleep study determined that you need a higher setting? Your doctor should have been aware that your machine was an suto, he/she would have had to prescribe it.
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Postby robysue » Mon Mar 28, 2011 1:12 pm

Grandma wrote:Seems to me that lowering the pressure would mean less effective handling of your apneas.
I don't know how common it is, but it is possible to be over titrated during a PSG.

And for some people with really bad aerophagia problems, a slightly higher AHI (3.0 to 4.0) with little or no discomfort may be better than a really great AHI (below 1.5) with severe discomfort---particularly if the discomfort is severe enough where the sufferer is thinking about abandoning CPAP therapy altogether.

What kind of doctor would recommend a lower pressure setting if your sleep study determined that you need a higher setting? Your doctor should have been aware that your machine was an suto, he/she would have had to prescribe it.

Since CPAP and APAP machines are billed under the same code, the doctor may not be aware you have an APAP until you tell him/her.

As for recommending a lower pressure than the titration study, it may be the doctor is more concerned about the potential for abandoning treatment altogether than getting the AHI as low as possible. For many people, a slight decrease in pressure is enough to take the edge off the aerophagia without causing enough of an increase in AHI to render treatment ineffective.
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8/1/2010 sleep study results:
AHI = 3.9 [AHI = (#OA +#CA + #H w/desat) per hour]
RDI = 23.4 [RDI = (#OA +CA + #H w/desat + #H w/arousal) per hour]
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Postby oldfartcg » Mon Mar 28, 2011 5:07 pm

My study came back saying 8psi was where it stopped the severe apnea, but they put it at 12, although the tests were inconclusive, as I could not get to REM sleep. (I always woke up). I never had anyone explain the results to me. And this other doctor was not the same one who did my sleep study, and I did not say it adjusted itself.

Tonight I will go without the mask, as I do want to sleep! Tomorrow they are going to reduce the pressure, so I will see how that goes. I do not see how this stuff is to help you, if you cant sleep at all. The whole reason I when for a sleep study was because I was tired all the time, now I am actually falling asleep at work because I am so tired from not sleeping. The wife said I traded snoring with farting!

I think I need to switch to the complaining thread!
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Postby nosiemaker » Fri Apr 01, 2011 12:06 pm

I"m glad to know that I am not alone. I have been on the CPAP for one month now and saw my doc this past Monday. Told him of my complaint and he said to stop using the chin strap I had purchased to keep my mouth shut. Well its been a week now without the chin strap and their is no difference in how bloated I am in the morning. I feel better after doing some yoga stretching, yet I am still gassy and I never use to be. So I called my doc this morning and he is lowering my pressure to 5 (was 6) to see if this will help at all. Very frustrating , its not a nice feeling to feel bloated all the time. When I took my machine to be changed, the tech was going to ask their rep if he has answers to this bloaty problem.. :lol:
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Postby Mrs Rip Van Winkle » Tue Apr 05, 2011 7:12 am

I have found that treating GERD/Acid Reflux (though I did not know I had it) helped with the aerophagia a LOT. The band of muscle at the end of your esophagus does not close properly if you have GERD. Many have GERD and do not even know it when with others it is very apparent. Another thing that has caused me to swallow air is when my sinuses keep running in the back of my throat. When sleeping I tend to swallow verses getting rid of it.
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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Postby nosiemaker » Tue Apr 05, 2011 8:15 am

I am doing much better now, my doc had my pressure lowered to 5 instead of 6 and told me no chin strap. I am not waking up in pain anymore or feeling bloated all day. Thank goodness. :-D
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Postby oldfartcg » Fri Apr 08, 2011 1:46 pm

Mrs Rip Van Winkle wrote:I have found that treating GERD/Acid Reflux (though I did not know I had it) helped with the aerophagia a LOT. The band of muscle at the end of your esophagus does not close properly if you have GERD. Many have GERD and do not even know it when with others it is very apparent.


Interesting this GERD/ band of muscle issue. Are you saying when you sleep, air should not be going into your stomach? I will have to ask my doctor about this.

So how do you tread GERD?

I had my pressure reduced from 12 to 10 with no change. I am now waking up at 3:30 every morning, with severe pain from the bloating. I remove the mask, spend the next hour making noise ( even the dog leaves the room at that time!) After an hour, I am OK again and can fall asleep ( just as the alarm goes off!). Needless to say, I still fall asleep during the day.
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Postby nosiemaker » Fri Apr 08, 2011 2:32 pm

you should not be waking up in the middle of the night feeling like you are. Keep on it with your doctor, mine didn't seem to bothered by it but he did lower my pressure. Maybe you still need it lowered even more.
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Postby cwesttherapist » Wed Apr 20, 2011 5:30 pm

Swallowing air could be caused from the position you sleep in. It won't hurt you, but if it bothers you, try to keep your head back (hyperextended) by getting rid of one pillow or tucking a small pillow under your chin.
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Re: CPAP Use - Remedy for Stomach Bloating

Postby cem6961 » Mon Jul 25, 2011 11:38 am

I'm having the same problem. When I told the Dr. my VPAP machine was blowing me up like a ballon, he told me, no the machine was not blowing me up. He said I was swallowing air. Now someone explain this to me, If my VPAP machine is pumping more air than I can inhale, my guess is the machine is forcing the air into my stomach. I might I have to swallow the air to prevent choking. The bottom line is the VPAP machine is causing my bloating. This bloating has caused some other problems that I will be talking about with my Primary care doctor today. Tomorrow I have another appointment with my Pulmonary care doctor to discuss other options. If the doctors are able to solve my bloating problem I will pass this info on.
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Re: CPAP Use - Remedy for Stomach Bloating

Postby Sleepless in MI » Tue Jul 26, 2011 6:51 pm

I too have been experiencing stomach bloating with my Cpap machine. My doctor says it is all in my head, but co-workers have actually noticed it growing as if I were a prgnant man!

I have gained 30 pounds since using my cpap machine, gone up from a 34 wist to a 38 waist size. This is very difficult to deal with. I feel fat!

I am ready to shove the machine in a drawer and deal with the normal life and I am always soo tired in the mornings too. I am 45 and feel like I am 80 yrs old. So sad to look in the mirror and see the bloated belly hanging over my belt.

It is almost like my stomach is pushed out and pushing my intestines out along with all the other organs down there. I still feel trememndous amount of drainage in the back of my throat, and try to cough it all up, always clear or white mucus, sometimes it looks sticky or like slime. I have gerd, ulcers, allergies, gastritis, and feel tired all the time.

My doctor always says lose weight! So I try and it seems that I gain weight. I need help before I lose my mind! Anyone??
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