Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Wednesday-Part 3


Well today we get to the whole reason we went to Perth last week. I was referred to the sleep studies clinic to see how bad my sleep apnoea was. There was no question if I had it; my symptoms  quite clearly showed that with extreme weariness, lack of concentration, memory loss and irritability.
 I first met with the sleep specialist, a man of few words. I was booked to sleep at the clinic on the Wednesday evening and had to report in by 7pm as the technicians have to put all the recording devices on you. From the top of my head to the legs I was plugged in and very uncomfortable. I was also laying on my back on a three inch foam mattress; it was a recipe for disaster. I only ever sleep on my side as I have back pain and also it is easier for me to breath. I was unable to turn over in this slim bed and so was in quite a lot of pain. The bloke thank god stayed with me all night. Actually the staff asked him to so that he could attend to my needs as they don't have nursing staff in the clinic. He was assigned the next room to mine.
 If anyone has had this test they will understand how difficult it is to sleep. There is also a camera above your head to record any movements.
I moaned and groaned all night, was not able to sleep despite the blokes best attempts at massaging my legs and feet which usually does the trick at home. I eventually sent him off for some shut eye.
I had to ring the buzzer three times as the pain was intense and worsening and I was getting anxious and feeling ill. At 3am I decided to get the technicians to call hubby back in. It was decided that as I was unable to sleep they could let me leave. I was happy with that. Apparently even though I thought I never slept a wink they assured me I had slept enough for them to take data.
I was informed at the follow up appointment on the Friday that my case was quite serious and that I stopped breathing 196 times an hour! They issued me a cpap machine which I am to trial for 4 weeks after which I then return to the hospital so they can decide on the course of treatment which will likely be me having to purchase a machine of my own and use for the rest of my life. The following images courtesy of Resmed show the woman with the full face mask on. This is the one I was most anxious about as I am claustrophobic and this one as you can see encompasses both nose and mouth. I was anxious and hyperventilating when the technician tried to put it over my face. I took it from her and placed it on myself which made me feel more in control so a lot less anxious. The other mask worn by the woman at the bottom is the nasal pillow.  This was less cumbersome but still a presence felt over the face. I had thought this would be the one to use for me but after trialling both I am not so sure. So now I am alternating the nights and working out which one is for me. This is very serious for me and the health consequences if I don't use the treatment are rather dire. I am giving it 100% effort and if it fails it wont be be for lack of my trying. the other pic is the cpap machine. It is very not to large and very quiet. FYI the original cpap machine was a vacuum cleaner in reverse mode. They sure have come a long way since then.

Well if your still reading good on you. Not to sure if this has been interesting reading or not but it is my experience and all that I find.
If your still keen I will be back for a final part and some exciting news, for me anyway. :)



  1. I am here!
    Keep posting!



  2. Hopefully the machine will help keep you in good working order! I hear that they look scarier than what they actually are.

  3. Keep persisting with it Jan. It is going to take time to adjust. It took my brother quite a few weeks to get used to it. He now wouldn't have it any other way. Looking forward to your next instalment!

  4. You're not only persistent but a wonderful example of combining wisdom with common sense. My brother too has had the CPAP machine for many years (in fact he has to have his six monthly checkup in a couple of weeks), and wouldn't, and couldn't, do with out it. It has made such a difference to his life. You're on the right road now Jan, and you have friends who are "walking" the journey with you.

    Maybe we're not literally sitting beside you, but by heck, we're with you in spirit.

    And God Bless the "bloke" - he deserves a hug from us all!

  5. I'm glad there is a light at the ed of the tunnel for you Jan. I really feel for you with this problem. When I was sleep deprived with young children my brain was so adled. I went & did a big Christmas shop then bought champagne in the bottle shop & went home with the champagne leaving the trolley full of groceries in the bottle shop. I guess I had my priorities right lol. I don't know how you've managed to be brave it for so long.xx Jane

  6. Wow Jan, good on you for getting through that! I've seen that test on TV before and thought I could never do it. I hope the trial goes well for you *hugs*

  7. My friend Kerri has sleep apnoea and she's really noticing the difference since she got her CPAP machine, Darth (great nickname huh?) And guess what? Kerri isn't fat! So don't let anyone blame it on your weight.

    The only thing she's struggling with is the pressure marks that Darth sometimes give her, but apparently they can adjust the mask to fit.