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Thread: ventilator

  1. #1
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    ventilator

    i'm looking for information about ventilators ie what's the difference between bpap cpap and nippies. i've been told different things from doctors speechies etc on whether using one would be beneficial . speech pathologist says it'll help with mucus. doctor at mnd clinic said probably a waste of time . i have no trouble breathing at the moment and have no problems using the cpap that the hospital loaned me . would have trouble using overnight as I turn over all the time and the hose would get tangled up. i've read a few posts where people say it prolongs life i'm not sure how . sorry if i'm asking questions that have already been answered ............... thanks Andrew

  2. #2
    Forum Member Ellie's Avatar
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    Why are you on CPAP?
    ​Diagnosed 03/2007. Limb onset (arm) sporadic ALS/MND.

  3. #3
    Forum Member Terry's Avatar
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    Hi Andrew,

    If your breathing is OK you don't need a breathing machine, I can only imagine that they have lent that to try and assist getting rid of the mucus.

    I know very little about either.

    Love Terry
    TB once said that "The forum is still the best source for friendship and information."

    It will only remain so if new people post and keeps us updated on things that work or don't work and tips.

    Please post on old threads that are of use so that others see them and feel free to start new subjects and threads.

  4. #4
    Forum Member Ellie's Avatar
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    Hi Andrew,

    BiPAP = bilevel positive airway pressure, i.e. different inspiration v expiration levels – higher pressure helps one take in a breath, whilst one breathes out with a much lower pressure.
    CPAP = continuous positive airway pressure, i.e. a single level of pressure.
    Nippy is just a brand name, they make CPAP, BiPAP & Cough Assist machines.

    A CPAP is contraindicated in ALS/MND as it means one has to breathe out/exhale against pressure. No healthcare professional worth their salt would prescribe a CPAP to someone with ALS/MND.

    A BiPAP is used to support one’s breathing muscles and to enhance CO2/O2 gas exchange, when FVC/SVC lung function has decreased to the extent that breathing will benefit from non-invasive ventilation. If you don’t get tangled in your CPAP hose, you will be fine with a BiPAP machine as they’re the same hose.

    Ellie.
    ​Diagnosed 03/2007. Limb onset (arm) sporadic ALS/MND.

  5. #5
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    sorry I got it wrong my machine is a bpap .i slept overnight at the sleep clinic a few months ago they said i didn't really need a bpap but they would loan me one to try at home to see if it helps with fatigue and getting a better sleep . tried about 1 hour a day for a month didn't notice much difference . started using it again last week to try and help with mucus as well as a nebuliser as i've coughing a lot . l also get breathless when transferring and trying to talk so hopefully it will help Andrew

  6. #6
    Forum Member Ellie's Avatar
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    TBH Andrew, using a BiPAP for just 1 hour per day won't make a difference to your energy levels, but it will help you get used to how it feels.

    It needs to be worn overnight for maximum benefit; it improves your sleep quality and will give you increased energy levels.

    If you can't cough up mucus, it is because your muscles are too weak which, in conjunction with your breathlessness, means (to me at least) you will benefit from using a BiPAP.

    The nebuliser will loosen, i.e. thin, the secretions, making them easier to cough up. If you still can't clear them then, depending on your muscle strength, either a modified AmbuBag/LVR bag or a Cough Assist machine will clear them.

    Do you take any meds to thin secretions? Is your fluid intake at least 1500mls/day? Does dairy increase your mucus production?

    Take care,
    Ellie.
    ​Diagnosed 03/2007. Limb onset (arm) sporadic ALS/MND.

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    no i don't take any meds to thin secretions . i think I drink enough i drink a lot of milk in smoothies so don't think that makes it worse . if I could find a way to use it at night without getting tangled i would give it a go . Andrew

  8. #8
    Forum Member Ellie's Avatar
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    I'd try cutting out, or reducing, the amount of milk you have for a few weeks to see if it makes a difference to mucus levels. If you don't want to have juice based smoothies, use a non-dairy milk instead. Some people find that pineapple and papaya juice cuts through the mucus. Water is the best for hydration, but for some without a feeding tube, it is hard to swallow.

    The most popular med for mucus is Carbocisteine. Or try Guaifenesin, found in OTC chesty cough syrups.

    In bed, try putting the BiPAP hose behind your head - mine comes from machine on bedside table, over my headboard and into the mask, no part of the hose is near my torso.

    Does your machine have a humidifier to moisten the air you'll breathe in? You may not need it depending on your climate.

    Good luck.
    ​Diagnosed 03/2007. Limb onset (arm) sporadic ALS/MND.

  9. #9
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    hi ellie my ventilator doesn't have a humidifier but I have a vaporiser on all night . i get what your saying about hose over the headboard but I sleep in a queen bed and turn over from one side to the other and gets stuck round my face . i turn every hour using an invention of mine , it's a piece of wood about 2ft wide and 1ft deep with a piece of gel wrapped around it placed at the foot of the bed under the sheet , when I have to turn i roll on my back and put my heels against the wood and push , without it i wouldn't be able to turn over , it's simple but effective . if anyone has an idea for the hose i would be grateful , thanks Andrew

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