Changing CPAP (APAP) Minimum Pressure Range

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In general, I’d recommend against doing exactly what I’ve done. However, my recent journey into tracking sleep stats provided me with information that I used to determine, on my own, what might be a better pressure range.

While reviewing data from 17 nights I realized that on 14 of those nights the average pressure used was above 9. In addition, in cpaptalk.com forums I read some accounts in which several individuals suggested that lower minimum pressure settings can be a problem for some people.

Specifically, the idea is that if a pressure of 9 is needed to clear the airway, but the minimum starting pressure is 6, then it may be taking the CPAP too long to detect that a higher pressure is needed. By the time the unit ramps up the pressure the apnea or hypopnea event may already be over due to the body’s automatic response.

I’ve used this range two nights in a row and I do seem to have experienced an improvement in my sleep.

Updated 10/12/2011: My opinion regarding exercising the ability to change machine settings has changed slightly. Visit my page on living with a CPAP for more information.

Switching From A ResMed Mirage Quattro to a Fisher and Paykel Forma (Full Face CPAP Masks)

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I’ve been relatively pleased with the ResMed Mirage Quattro Full Face Mask, especially compared to the ResMed Ultra Mirage Full Face Mask. The Ultra was prone to breaking near the forehead piece, which can be expensive enough when one already needs to replace the headgear and the mask seal from time-to-time on both masks (and probably almost any CPAP mask).

A little over a week ago I decided to look at getting a different type of mask. I knew there was room for improvement, especially after having some bad nights. I also wanted to have at least one spare mask around. Trying to get through even one night without it would be very difficult.

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Using ResMed S8 AutoSet II Stats to Track CPAP Effectiveness

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If you really want to know how to change/access your settings on a ResMed S8 AutoSet II or an S8 Elite then you can find the instructions on the Change CPAP Pressure Settings page at apneaboard.com. However, I recommend that you first read my comments on this in my Living with a CPAP (Obstructive Sleep Apnea Treatment) page.

A couple of weeks ago I started tracking how I felt after a night of sleep using a calendar. I’ve since graduated to maintaining an Excel spreadsheet that logs this information using a scale of zero to five (zero = severe fatigue, five = well rested). A couple of days ago I started checking the morning’s effectiveness stats and recording that in the same spreadsheet.

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