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Is Central Sleep Apnea 'intermittent'?
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Is Central Sleep Apnea 'intermittent'?

11 years ago, I was diagnosed with moderate central sleep apnea. Then had another study that showed 'mild central apnea' five years ago.  The doctor I saw said he only really could treat obstructive, so I have dealt with it by blowing a fan in my face, sleeping on a curved pillow on my side, and making sure I eat before bed which seems to help.  Some nights it is worse...several awakenings early in the night, and other nights it is less severe...maybe only one.  Rarely will I not recall waking up gasping for air at all, but I do have some 'good' nights.  I recently had another study done by a different doctor who said I did not meet the current definition  for apnea because my blood/oxygen levels didn't dip low enough, and the pauses in my breathing weren't long enough or were happening 'when I was awake' versus asleep.  I wake up when I quit breathing, so I'm not sure if this is what the doctor means by my being 'awake' when it happens, but apparently that no longer counts.  I was hoping for a trial with the new 'servo' which is supposed to work better for central...The CPAP and BIPAP only made it worse for me in the past.  The nights following the study, I had many of these episodes of waking up gasping for air as I was falling asleep.  Does central apnea, since it's neurological happen sporadically??? Is that typical?  I feel like this doctor is almost claiming  that because of how I 'performed' on this latest study, that I'm 'cured' and don't need treatment.  I couldn't disagree more, and am frustrated.  What do you recommend for me?  I do recall that in my earlier studies...the worst which was lost by the first doctor during a move, that my oxygen level never did drop dangerously low, but in this most recent study, I had 73 spontaeous awakenings.  I asked if they were caused by pauses in my breathing..The answer was simply that since I was considered awake during these pauses, that they don't count.  Long story short, I believe I have central apnea, and would like to have the cause determined and be able to start treatment, but since this latest study 'proves' I don't have it, I won't be further diagnosed for a cause or treated.  What do you suggest I do at this point?
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There are testing that you can have at home now, it is a unicorder that test for usually 3nights, that is according to you health insurace(how many nights) and it will give more data or nights of sleep to test.  or you could be set up with a cpap or bipap machine that has a smart card that records your sleeping data. Central Sleep apnea has a "mind" of its own.  It is coming from your brain.  Obstructive Sleep apnea is normally a patiens tongue, that is occluding the airway.  You are going to have to catch the central sleep apnea for you to be diagnosed and treated for it properly.  the difference in the two as far as treatment is almost the same thing, it is sleep with a cpap or bipap machine with a respiratory rate set on it for the times you dont breath the machine will kick in a breath for u, that keeps you brain from waking you up to breath.  You might not even realize you are being awakened.  There are 4 stages of sleep and most people get to the 4th stage"REM "sleep, if you only make it to the 3rd stage of sleep and your constantly being woken up then you dont rest, in other words you havent slept, therefore being fatigued during your waking hours. I would ask for a second opinion.  Go see a sleep specialist and they will have alot more answers for you.
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