Circadiance SleepWeaver Advance:
The Circadiance SleepWeaver Advance is a truly unique and effectiveCPAP mask.
Most CPAP masks are subtle variations of other CPAP masks. Not so with the SleepWeaver. This mask is a completely new design startingwith the materials. All other masks rely on a hard plastic skeleton that is used to hold a silicone or gel cushion that is responsible for maintaining the seal that allows positive pressure to build and keep your airway open during sleep in treating sleep apnea. Circadiance, the manufacturer of the SleepWeaver say the mask is made of soft cloth. It isn’t cloth, but it is very comfortable. The outer and bulk of the inside feels like a water proof windbreaker. The inner membrane that creates the seal (the Zzzephyr seal) is a very thin and durable piece of material that reminds me of Teflon Tape. There is a very slightly sticky quality to it.
SleepWeaver is probably the most comfortable nasal mask on the market. There are no plastic pieces that can dig into your face. This is the best mask if you like to sleep on your side or even stomach. With plastic framed masks, laying on your side would cause your pillow to push the mask out of position while digging into your cheek or nose. The SleepWeaver just molds to your pillow and your face while keeping your therapeutic pressure steady.
This mask is light. This is one of the few nasal masks that we would recommend for patients who have anxiety and claustrophobia with CPAP masks. The old headgear was nothing special, but it was durable and did its job. Midway through testing, Circadiance came out with a new head gear. It is comfortable and do have improvements. Velcro tabs on the side are easier to grab. The strap that goes on the top of your head is wider and much softer since they use more of a felt like material.
The mask only comes in “One Size Fits Most.” I have a huge “unfortunate” nose. My wife’s is as cute as a button. We both had no problems getting a seal at a wide range of pressures. The fitting video that comes with the mask is helpful, but don’t bet the farm on it. Use your own intuition on getting rid of leaks initially. I found that pinching in on leaks near my eye allowed the “balloon-like” mask to inflate more so that when I let go the leak was gone for good. I also found that adjustment near the forehead is important for positioning the mask. None of this was mentioned on the video or from other user tips on their website. Moving the mask horizontally back and forth is a great piece of advice in getting a great seal. You really don’t need to tighten this mask down, which makes it that much more comfortable.
Cleaning this mask is easy since it is cloth and there are no nooks and crannies for your disgusting face juices to hang out. Hot soapy water, scrub with your thumbs, and hang to dry. Circadiance says it dries in 2 hours…we found it was more like 4 hours. Really…not a big deal at all, just wash it in the morning.
This mask has a great disadvantage because of the material and the cleaning protocols in hospitals and sleep labs between patient use. They aren’t going to have a seperate cleaning protocol and materials for just one mask. Because of this, you probably aren’t going to be shown this mask. That’s too bad because it is a great option!
What don’t we like about the SleepWeaver: There is a piece of tape that connects the swivel valve (only plastic piece that holds the tube) to the cloth mask. That is taped to keep it sealed. It is possible that if you wash this very often or it gets wet too much, that this will come off. In this case you would have to turn the mask inside out and put new medical tape on. Instructions come with the mask, but the dexterity involved may be tough for some elderly CPAP users. Don’t let this prevent you from trying the SleepWeaver as it is no different than having to change the cushion on other masks.
Another thing is that it only comes in one size. Two sizes with an overlap would be nice just as an option. Something that we would like to see is a Full Face SleepWeaver. This should be possible with a newly designed headgear. Call me and we’ll make it happen. Then fix the in lab cleaning problem. Solution to soak it in that goes out free with lab kits. With this, Circadiance could easily dominate the CPAP interface market. Although, they will probably get there on their own with a simple word of mouth campaign.