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Steven B. Ronsen updated their profile
Sep 15

Getting the Sleep Apnea Run-Around: Bill's Story

Sleep Apnea is hard enough as it is without doctors making our lives even harder. Of course not all doctors are ignorant, stupid and incompetent. But Bill's doctor certainly is.

Bill is a dear friend of the family who has severe sleep apnea, along with a host of other problems such as diabetes and heart disease, probably brought on in part by not having been treated for Sleep Apnea until he was in his sixties. When he started with CPAP treatment for the disorder, he quickly gave up, not being able to adjust to sleeping with a mask on at night. Understandable, but so are the risks he faced of not being treated, which I managed to impress upon him enough to take back up his treatment.

After a long struggle finding the right mask and machine, Bill is finally using the device every night. He's even feeling more energetic. As far as he's concerned, he just needs to keep doing what he's doing and he'll be fine. And when he reported all this to his sleep doctor and let the physician read the data off his data-capable Respironics machine, the doctor agreed, sending him off with an "Attaboy!" and a pat on the back. The doctor even said that in all his years of practice, he had never seen such good results.

Problem is, although Bill is using the machine, feels better, and has a pretty low AHI, he is in serious trouble because the data shows his mask is leaking at a miserable rate. Essentially, the air meant to be pushed down Bill's airway is not getting where it needs to be because it's almost all leaking out! I confirmed this conclusion with knowledgeable sleep technicians, and with a technical guru at Respironics.

Here is the summary page of Bill's data:

Add Bill to the list of innocent victims of the medical system. Our next step is to find a doctor who is competent. So far it's been about a month. Needless to say, the search continues...

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