Free CPAP Advice and Sleep Apnea Treatment Help Board • View topic - After 5 yrs of CPAP
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Unread post  Post subject: After 5 yrs of CPAP  |  Posted: Tue Aug 13, 2019 9:16 am
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Joined: Thu Jan 23, 2014 11:11 am
Posts: 125
Location: Eastern Ontario, Canada
PAP Mask: ResMed AirFit P10 nasal pillows.
PAP Machine: ResMed S9 Elite.
Humidifier: ResMed H5i (humidity set ~ 5.0) with ClimateLine tubing (set ~23C).
Pressure Setting: Currently 7.4cmH2O. Keep EPR set to 1 and zero ramp.

My apologies for not staying more active on this forum, but over time I've more or less resolved myself to just plugging along. I've been on CPAP for more than 5 years now, and the first year (or three) was continually looking for ways to improve my results.
Here are some comments below FWIW.

Before I even started CPAP I researched the masks on the market, and tried to find the one that was comfortable to wear and minimal in bulk and straps etc. Masks are so personal and not all types or makes/brands work for some people. I decided on the AirFtit P10 and it worked well, once I resolved my mouth leaks. Learning to keep my mouth closed was a challenge but after a month or so, it became second nature. I still keep my eye out for new masks which might be superior for my use, but nothing has made me want to switch as yet. Feel free to offer a suggestion if you know of one.

I'm still using my original ResMed S9, which is plugging along with little or no problems. I probably would have replaced it by now, but they changed the funding here in Ontario, where they will only repair or replace a broken machine. Hmmm :?
I've struggled with complex sleep apnea over the years, and standard CPAP was prescribed given I did not meet the criteria for other machines. Not sure switching at this point would be a benefit or not.

I've fiddled (incrementally up/down) with my pressure over the years in hopes of finding a sweet spot (i.e.minimal pressure to avoid CA's but yet still avoid OA's). In the past I've tried playing with the EPR and had very mixed results. Many suggested to just turn EPR off and get used to 100% CPAP, but for me without the EPR I'd almost always get CA's. If I let the EPR go above 1, I would risk getting a lot of OAs. So I haven't touched the EPR setting for about 2 years, until about 5 days ago. I increased the EPR and anticipated my results would suffer. So far they have been good and the CAs/OAs are under control. We'll see how this goes, but the higher EPR does provide for a more natural breathing cycle (deeper breaths and exhales).

So my question now is, should I consider upgrading my machine and keeping the S9 as a backup :?:
What are the pros and cons of changing machines at this point, and is the cost worth the change :?:
I'd go back in for another sleep study, but I doubt it would provide me (or the sleep Dr) with any new information that would change my prescription or treatment. (Note: I've saved more than 5 yrs of data and can access it all using SleepyHead).

FWIW, I still hate having to use CPAP, but it is a necessary part of my life. Nonetheless, I'm continually going to make it as comfortable and as effective as it possibly can be!

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