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» LymeNet Flash » Questions and Discussion » Medical Questions » Questions about CPAP for apnea (and SoCal recommendations?)

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Author Topic: Questions about CPAP for apnea (and SoCal recommendations?)
Hoosiers51
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Alright, I have tried calling local companies, and can't get a hold of anyone. Since I'm only up certain hours, this is becoming frustrating. I am getting exhasperated.

I have a few basic questions.

So will I be renting the equipment (the thing that pumps the air)? How much is it to rent per month? I'm getting ready to pay out of pocket if this company doesn't hurry up and answer my calls.

I buy the mask myself, right? (which I'm assuming is how it works) What if this company doesn't carry masks I like? I just order one online?

Can anyone recommend a good company in Southern CA to use? I am beyond annoyed. I want to start sometime before I turn 80.

Posts: 4590 | From Midwest | Registered: Jun 2008  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
TerryK
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Your sleep doctor should be giving you a list of companies that can help you. I use Lincare in Oregon and they are in many other States. They aren't perfect but they are OK.
http://www.lincare.com/customers-visitors/locationmap.cfm

My insurance pays for everything. The only reason most don't pay is if it is not deemed medically necessary. You need a prescription from your doctor to get any cpap equipment.

The equiment is usually rented by the insurance company until it is paid for. I don't know if they all work that way but the two machines that I've had were paid for by different insurance companies and they both rented until paid for.

Edited to add:
I don't know how much it is per month. Depends on exactly which machine, mask etc. that you get. Your doctor should have had you try out at least one mask while you were being titrated.
Terry

Posts: 6282 | From Oregon | Registered: Jan 2006  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
Haley
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I know that there is a company called REM sleep labs but I have not actually met with them. I won't give my opinion about my impression over the phone. They have a website.

I also know of a good sleep specialist doctor at Scripps that will order the sleep study if she thinks it is necessary. You can PM me for her name. She is in San Diego.

I'm not sure what information you need exactly.

I still have not gone for my first appointment.

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Hoosiers51
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Thanks for the replies.

What happened is that I did my two overnight studies before moving here from another state. So I have a prescription for what I need, but no company for supplies, and no doctor in this state.

My prescription was sent to this one company, Apria, but they haven't tried to contact me since I didn't have insurance until this week....and I can't get a hold of them. And now I'm reading online that they are terrible.

I found another site, that JUST does sleep equipment. So I think I'm gonna go with these folks.

Hopefully problem solved? But I would like recommendations on any companies that are good. The new place I found is called Advanced Sleep Medicine Services. Haven't gotten a hold of them either.

Should I try to find a local sleep doctor? Or now that I have my prescription, do I not need one?

My doctor in NC had recommended Lincare, but they aren't in my new area.

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Haley
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I don't think you need to see another doctor if you have the prescription.

check out http://remsleeplabs.com/

They may be able to help also.

I have an appointment with a sleep doc in a couple of weeks. I've been wanting to do this for years.

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sk8ter
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Where in So. cal are you located? I am in OC and have a great dr. One of the best is at Long Beach Memorial Dr. Stephan Brown ..He was on the new research for Central sleep apnea that has just been discovered. This has to be treated on a different machine. It can be part of dyautonomia that many of us have. UCLA also has this latest research.

Those doctors are: Kendra Becker, MD, MPH, Fellow, Department of Sleep Medicine, University of California Los Angeles Medical Center and

Jeanne M Wallace, MD, MPH, Professor of Clinical Medicine, University of California at Los Angeles School of Medicine

Hope this helps

Posts: 871 | From orange county, ca. | Registered: Jan 2006  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
ConnieMc
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Just my opinion ....

The "local" company the doc referred me to required that I pay the full deductible designated by my ins co. for the entire year. That was $650. Further, they told me it would cost about $650 a year after my insurance for replacement this and that. Basically, they required that I pay my full deductible each year to "maintain" it.

I simply got a prescription from my doctor and went to CPAP.com. I found them to be wonderful. I paid a whopping $350 for full purchase of the machine and have now had it for 3 years. With a new mask and tubing each year, my out of pocket has been a fraction of the outrageous cost of the "local" company.

The one time an updated sleep study showed that I needed a level adjustment, I emailed CPAP.com to ask what I should do and within 5 minutes I had the written instructions for my machine needed to make the adjustment myself. A few buttons later, the change was made.

Personally, I think there is a huge markup in that industry. CPAP.com was wonderful and very helpful with any and all questions that I have had.

Save a few bucks and look into it.

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sometimesdilly
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(((((((Hoose))))))))))))))))

have missed everything about your apnea but this post.. (was there more?)

what a coincidence. 2 days from now i go for 2nd sleep study to get the same dang machine-- it never occurred to me that insurance wouldn;t cover the whole thing.

so an apnea machine is one more gigantic struggle too???

AGHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!!!

let's keep in touch on this one. i'm glad i saw this post.. GOOD LUCK!! and wish me.. well, at least not H==LL.

dill

Posts: 2505 | From lost in the maze | Registered: Aug 2006  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
TerryK
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sk8
Can you elaborate about the new type of central sleep apnea and the different machine?

I was unable to use the standard CPAP and had to use one that would automatically adjust within a huge range rather than stay within a more narrow range. Wonder if that is why? It took over a year to figure that out and I had to threaten to find another doctor before I could get a more appropriate machine.

Connie - Sounds like they wanted to flood you with all the equipment that is allowed to be replaced via your insurance contract. You can usually decline some of it. I only allow them to send me about 1/2 of what is allowed.

That said, depending on the type of mask, they do wear out and will not seal very well if not replaced on a regular basis. I need to replace mine about every 3 months or I start to have more leaks. I only know this because the type of machine I have records the events. The regular CPAP's don't.

Terry

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sk8ter
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Hey Terry here are the studies and some articles about it. It needs to be treated with a Adaptive Sero Ventalation (AVP)

This is the UCLA study
http://emedicine.medscape.com/article/304967-followup

This is a great article by Dr. Brown
http://www.sleepreviewmag.com/issues/articles/2007-06_03.asp

This is a Stanford study
http://www3.interscience.wiley.com/journal/109677716/abstract?CRETRY=1&SRETRY=0

This is only treated by certain sleep specialists that have this training.
God Bless

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sometimesdilly
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sk*ter--

the articles seem to be about central sleep apnea (???) which seems to be different from, and rarer than garden variety sleep apnea?

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Hoosiers51
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sk8ter-

Don't know if you remember, but I mentioned in Chat that I live in Santa Monica (it's me, Hoos...guessing you either forgot where I live, or maybe you just didn't look at who was posting). So I am close to UCLA.

Thanks for the GREAT info! [Smile] I'll have to find out what type exactly my apnea is. I wonder if there's a way to do that without seeing one of those great docs, or if I should make an appt?

Actually, the more I think about it, I should probably just see if the regular CPAP helps me or not first. Because in that second link, Dr. Brown says that these patients are not helped by CPAP.

re: link to dyautonomia.....Very interesting. I was seeing one of the country's best dysautonomia specialists when I lived in the Midwest, but this was before the apnea diagnosis. Currently, I am doing nothing for the dysautonomia.

I was thinking about trying to find a dysautonomia specialist in this area too...normally that is a cardiologist, but it's kind of like LLMD's in that some docs treat it, but many are ignorant.

Do you know of any dysautonomia specialists around here, while we're on the subject of awesome doctors?

Dilly,

Hope you are able to figure something out that helps. I am very interested to see if any of this makes a difference for us.


The place I've chosen to get my equipment from is Advanced Sleep Medicine Services in West LA. They seem up on the "latest", and maybe they could even provide that AVP in the future, if I need it.

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Hoosiers51
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Buried on page 2....bumping for sk8ter and others.

I was very excited about this possibility that there are other treatments if CPAP doesn't help.

Posts: 4590 | From Midwest | Registered: Jun 2008  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
   

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