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View Full Version : Sleep Apnea - Worth 50% in retirement???



Ripcord
05-02-2012, 02:44 AM
Forgive my ignorance but it will be a few years before I retire so I haven't looked into VA retirement benefits all that much. My doctor mentioned that my sleep apnea will be worth 50% disability from the VA when I retire. Can someone please tell me exactly what this means? Does the VA cut you an extra check every month or something or is there some kind of tax benefit? Do I get to park in handicap spots?



(j/k on that last one....)

Tak
05-02-2012, 02:52 AM
generally speaking, good news sleep apnea with CPAP, bad news MEB.
Unless your within a year of retirement I think. And yes, the 50% does
kick in a second check, disability, no tax

My problem is I had the sleep test, no sleep apnea, but severe sleep disturbance,
have been on CPAP every sense

Ripcord
05-02-2012, 03:04 AM
generally speaking, good news sleep apnea with CPAP, bad news MEB.
Unless your within a year of retirement I think. And yes, the 50% does
kick in a second check, disability, no tax

My problem is I had the sleep test, no sleep apnea, but severe sleep disturbance,
have been on CPAP every sense
I was diagnosed with a minor case of sleep apnea (i.e. I wouldn't know I had it other than the doc sent me in for a sleep study due to elevated blood pressure.) I have an APAP now and my MEB just closed. They put me on a C1 assignment code. SO all is good in the hood for now. Just curious what the retirement benefits the doc was talking about meant.

Thanks.

Tak
05-02-2012, 03:13 AM
I was diagnosed with a minor case of sleep apnea (i.e. I wouldn't know I had it other than the doc sent me in for a sleep study due to elevated blood pressure.) I have an APAP now and my MEB just closed. They put me on a C1 assignment code. SO all is good in the hood for now. Just curious what the retirement benefits the doc was talking about meant.

Thanks.

look up concurrent receipt...You will get a retirement check when you retire, PLUS a whole other check seperately that is not taxed. Is can range from a thousand to thousands of dollars, depending on your final percentage, wife, kids, etc.

You have to have at least 50% to qualify and sleep apnea with machine starts at 50%, so you hit the jackpot and may
never have to work again.

imported_oih82w8
05-02-2012, 03:35 AM
Forgive my ignorance but it will be a few years before I retire so I haven't looked into VA retirement benefits all that much. My doctor mentioned that my sleep apnea will be worth 50% disability from the VA when I retire. Can someone please tell me exactly what this means? Does the VA cut you an extra check every month or something or is there some kind of tax benefit? Do I get to park in handicap spots?



(j/k on that last one....)

You may be just kidding on the Handicap spots, but it's TRUE! The magic number for Disabled Veteran plates (in Texas at least) is 50%. My vehicle plate went from $65 annual to $3 every year (and the DMV highly recommended that you pay for three (or four) years in advance so it makes the check go further and less paperwork for them.

Here is a link for a VA disabilty calculator to figure the amount that Tak was referring to;

http://www.vvaarizona.org/va_comp_calc.php#result

Ripcord
05-02-2012, 03:37 AM
You may be just kidding on the Handicap spots, but it's TRUE! The magic number for Disabled Veteran plates (in Texas at least) is 50%. My vehicle plate went from $65 annual to $3 every year (and the DMV highly recommended that you pay for three (or four) years in advance so it makes the check go further and less paperwork for them.

lol I was just kidding in that I would never actually park in one unless I was truly disabled and not j "technically". I will be happy to take the check though.....

garhkal
05-02-2012, 04:17 AM
I honestly can't see WHY sleep apnea, which is a condition you have from birth (from what i remember of reading on it), so therefore it should not be considered military related, should count for disability.. IIRC all the disability rating is for is to compensate you for injuries and disabilities you received DUE to your mil work.

BRUWIN
05-02-2012, 04:40 AM
You have to have at least 50% to qualify and sleep apnea with machine starts at 50%, so you hit the jackpot and may
never have to work again.

Great...so the government pays thousands of dollars extra for people to sleep their life away. GOD BLESS AMERICA!!

Ripcord
05-02-2012, 04:51 AM
I honestly can't see WHY sleep apnea, which is a condition you have from birth (from what i remember of reading on it), so therefore it should not be considered military related, should count for disability.. IIRC all the disability rating is for is to compensate you for injuries and disabilities you received DUE to your mil work.

Blew my mind when I found out too. From what I've researched though it is not always hereditary. much of the time extra wieght (i.e. fat) contributes greatly. Once I got diagnosed and talking to people I know a ton of people technically have it and most don't know it until a sleep study is done. I know people that have it so bad that they are walking zombies until it was treated... I was lucky mine is not that bad. Definitely don't know why it is considered 50% disabled but I'm sure there is a reason.

You'd think if it is from birth and so many people have it they would screen for it at MEPS?

Ripcord
05-02-2012, 04:52 AM
so the government pays thousands of dollars extra for people to sleep their life away.

wha?




.....................

Bunch
05-02-2012, 04:57 AM
I honestly can't see WHY sleep apnea, which is a condition you have from birth (from what i remember of reading on it), so therefore it should not be considered military related, should count for disability.. IIRC all the disability rating is for is to compensate you for injuries and disabilities you received DUE to your mil work.

I was diagnosed with severe sleep apnea and use a CPAP. For what I was told during my MEB process is that Sleep Apnea is a condition that can get progressively worst as you get older and if you get it diagnosed while in service it will be rated service connected.

They where trying to take it off the list but Congress put a stop to that in 2007. In my case the AF assigned a code of EPTS (existing prior to service) to my condition but speaking with a few subject matter experts of VA disability claims they tell me that if it wasn't on my records prior to coming in I will get the 50%.

The social security administration also considers sleep apnea as a disability.

BRUWIN
05-02-2012, 05:23 AM
wha?


.....................

Yeah...I had a troop with sleep apnea and he was always nodding off. He was worse than Rip Van Winkle.. I don't see why the taxpayers should pay people to sleep.

WPNS
05-02-2012, 05:58 AM
Yes, I'm retired, getting disability, and sleep apnea is an automatic 50%.... Just takes the VA a few years to get the claim process finished. and THEN the backpay has to go to DFAS for a 90 day audit. So don't plan on spending any of it for a good long while

MACHINE666
05-02-2012, 10:01 AM
Some people may think that 50% disability for sleep apnea is a scam, but rest assured, it's not.

I've had sleep apnea for the longest time, and even had the UPPP surgery done in order to correct it....it worked for a while but now it's ineffective. Using the CPAP device helps somewhat in my case, only no matter how hard I try to sleep with the mask on at night, I can never fall into the deep stages of REM sleep. It really sucks. Most of the time I sleep without it, and feel like a train wreck upon waking, since I never get good quality rest. I'm dragging ass throughout the day and have trouble getting to sleep despite being chronically tired.

Ultimately it is a life-threatening condition since you stop breathing when asleep. Sometimes it's just for a few seconds, and other times it can be up to a minute before your body's natural rhythm catches it and you start breathing again. Either way, it can affect your blood pressure, heart, and create secondary health problems.

So yes, 50% is worth it...

Shrike
05-02-2012, 11:57 AM
Blew my mind when I found out too. From what I've researched though it is not always hereditary. much of the time extra wieght (i.e. fat) contributes greatly. Once I got diagnosed and talking to people I know a ton of people technically have it and most don't know it until a sleep study is done. I know people that have it so bad that they are walking zombies until it was treated... I was lucky mine is not that bad. Definitely don't know why it is considered 50% disabled but I'm sure there is a reason.

You'd think if it is from birth and so many people have it they would screen for it at MEPS?
I fit that category.

bb stacker
05-02-2012, 12:05 PM
rainman will be along shortly to berate all of you bloodsucking va leaches.

Outback 1982
05-02-2012, 01:20 PM
My problem is I had the sleep test, no sleep apnea, but severe sleep disturbance,
have been on CPAP every sense

Did you retire and receive a disability rating for the severe sleep disturbance? I also did the study, woke up 47 times, with 2-3 apnea episodes, but have to have at least 9+ per hour to be on the lower end for a diagnosis. ENT has suggested 02 therapy and possibly CPAP later on.

Drackore
05-02-2012, 01:47 PM
I was diagnosed with it back at my 1st duty station. Tried the CPAP, but I kept knocking it off my face. They did a surgery on my nose to widen the nasal passages. That was awesome. It crept back though and a few yrs later I had a sleep study but it didn't register enough.

Def gonna get that study again before I retire.

SENDBILLMONEY
05-02-2012, 04:00 PM
Forgive my ignorance but it will be a few years before I retire so I haven't looked into VA retirement benefits all that much. My doctor mentioned that my sleep apnea will be worth 50% disability from the VA when I retire. Can someone please tell me exactly what this means? Does the VA cut you an extra check every month or something or is there some kind of tax benefit? Do I get to park in handicap spots?
(j/k on that last one....)

38 CFR Part 4, Diagnostic Code 6847

6847 Sleep Apnea Syndromes (Obstructive, Central, Mixed):
Chronic respiratory failure with carbon dioxide retention or cor pulmonale, or; requires tracheostomy 100
Requires use of breathing assistance device such as continuous airway pressure (CPAP) machine 50
Persistent day-time hypersomnolence 30
Asymptomatic but with documented sleep disorder breathing 0

Google CRDP. Congrats.

Banned
05-02-2012, 04:03 PM
I honestly can't see WHY sleep apnea, which is a condition you have from birth (from what i remember of reading on it), so therefore it should not be considered military related, should count for disability.. IIRC all the disability rating is for is to compensate you for injuries and disabilities you received DUE to your mil work.

From what I understand, it can also develop later in life, and as a result of military service. The problem of course is that there are a lot of cases that WERE in fact pre-existing. I knew a guy who had it before he enlisted, yet was able to milk disability for it when he was discharged.

Tak
05-02-2012, 05:13 PM
Did you retire and receive a disability rating for the severe sleep disturbance? I also did the study, woke up 47 times, with 2-3 apnea episodes, but have to have at least 9+ per hour to be on the lower end for a diagnosis. ENT has suggested 02 therapy and possibly CPAP later on.

I retire effective 1 Dec, I'll let you know what happens. In the meantime it's been a battle becuase the Dr who reads tests only diagnosis for Obstructive Sleep Apnea. So in one sentence I dont have it, but for my sever sleep disturbance the same Dr put me on CPAP. I will file the sleep disturbance with CPAP, and let the VA figure it out. I actually asked the rep from VA at TAP and he stated it would be in the percentages allowed for whatever is claimed. Meaning if there are other areas such as sleep disturbance, I better check the CFR 38, now that I think about it. I need the right termonology and also it will tell if it's like 0, 30, 50 etc based on the effects it has on your life. If you think about it, we sleep 30% of hour days/life, so it's a big effect. I am banking on the CPAP pushing the VA into rating at least something.

Note: Insomnia is in the mental arena. My connection says, mention the distrurbance with CPAP and hope VA rep throws it into the arena of apnea, as it more closely fits that. Just my two cents based on a trusted source.

Rainmaker
05-02-2012, 06:58 PM
Put down the Code of Federal Regulations and get back to work scumbags. You can sleep when you're dead.

MACHINE666
05-02-2012, 07:50 PM
rainman will be along shortly to berate all of you bloodsucking va leaches.

Wow, do you know how to call it, or what?

MACHINE666
05-02-2012, 07:51 PM
Put down the Code of Federal Regulations and get back to work scumbags. You can sleep when you're dead.


Eat a turd.

garhkal
05-02-2012, 08:02 PM
Blew my mind when I found out too. From what I've researched though it is not always hereditary. much of the time extra wieght (i.e. fat) contributes greatly. Once I got diagnosed and talking to people I know a ton of people technically have it and most don't know it until a sleep study is done. I know people that have it so bad that they are walking zombies until it was treated... I was lucky mine is not that bad. Definitely don't know why it is considered 50% disabled but I'm sure there is a reason.

You'd think if it is from birth and so many people have it they would screen for it at MEPS?

That is true, you think they would screen out those who have it.. like they do epilepsy or asthma.


So yes, 50% is worth it...

Not if you had it prior coming in.

MACHINE666
05-02-2012, 08:49 PM
That is true, you think they would screen out those who have it.. like they do epilepsy or asthma.



Not if you had it prior coming in.

How many people at age 18 have something like this? I'm willing to bet few. In my case, it was first noticed when I was about 32 years old, when a chick I was banging at the time said I stopped breathing in my sleep and it scared the crap outta her. None of my previous roomies had mentioned anything similar to that, except that I used to snore really loud. If you ever get the UPPP surgery done, I guarantee you it is the most painful experience, next to getting your balls smashed with a sledge hammer.

Either way, if I'm gonna be Uncle Scam's butt-monkey, then he needs to take care of me when I've got problems....

giggawatt
05-02-2012, 09:06 PM
I've never heard of this until recently. I'm wondering if I should get tested at some point. I've noticed cases where I've been falling asleep and then wake up because it felt like I stopped breathing. No matter how much sleep at night I get, I always have trouble waking and I fall asleep while sitting at my desk sometimes. Might be worth looking into.

WPNS
05-02-2012, 09:39 PM
Posted by MACHINE666 If you ever get the UPPP surgery done, I guarantee you it is the most painful experience, next to getting your balls smashed with a sledge hammer.

That's a big negative there ghostrider... Have a kidney stone pass down your urethra, then tell me what pain is!!!! I've had the UPPP surgery, I'd have that pain daily to guarantee I never felt the death of a kidney stone taking it's sweet ass time passing out the tip of my pecker!

MACHINE666
05-02-2012, 09:51 PM
Posted by MACHINE666 If you ever get the UPPP surgery done, I guarantee you it is the most painful experience, next to getting your balls smashed with a sledge hammer.

That's a big negative there ghostrider... Have a kidney stone pass down your urethra, then tell me what pain is!!!! I've had the UPPP surgery, I'd have that pain daily to guarantee I never felt the death of a kidney stone taking it's sweet ass time passing out the tip of my pecker!

I'll have to take your word on the kidney stone thing...but that UPPP surgery was brutal for me.....

Rainmaker
05-02-2012, 10:21 PM
I'll have to take your word on the kidney stone thing...but that UPPP surgery was brutal for me.....

worse than your hysterectomy? what percentage did you get when they removed your ovary? Can one of you barracks lawyers with your noses burried in the CFR please enlighten the board...

MACHINE666
05-02-2012, 10:23 PM
worse than your hysterectomy? what percentage did you get when they removed your ovary? Can one of you barracks lawyers with your noses burried in the CFR please enlighten the board...

And you can eat a dick for all I care.

bb stacker
05-02-2012, 10:27 PM
careful though, i've heard they're like lays...you cant eat just one!

imported_oih82w8
05-02-2012, 10:31 PM
Posted by MACHINE666 If you ever get the UPPP surgery done, I guarantee you it is the most painful experience, next to getting your balls smashed with a sledge hammer.

That's a big negative there ghostrider... Have a kidney stone pass down your urethra, then tell me what pain is!!!! I've had the UPPP surgery, I'd have that pain daily to guarantee I never felt the death of a kidney stone taking it's sweet ass time passing out the tip of my pecker!


I can vouch for the kidney stone episode, three times for myself. The last time the stone was too big (5 millimeters) to pass through the plumbing (whatever the tube that runs from the kidney to the bladder is called) so they blasted it with an ultrasonic machine. Pissed out sand-like granules (still hurt) and blood for a spell.

jarhead dad
05-02-2012, 10:57 PM
I can vouch for the kidney stone episode, three times for myself. The last time the stone was too big (5 millimeters) to pass through the plumbing (whatever the tube that runs from the kidney to the bladder is called) so they blasted it with an ultrasonic machine. Pissed out sand-like granules (still hurt) and blood for a spell.

My vote for most painfully is being scoped for bladder cancer. Feels like a garden hose is being stuffed in! And broken glass coming out! Piss blood for weeks, and dread the idea of urinating every time. I wouldn't wish this on my worst enemy!

On the original topic, I have to get a sleep test scheduled, went to doc last week for lack of energy, and being tired all the time. He wants me to get the test. I have always been tired, and have had restless sleep for at least 20 years. But this was just the norm for many before this was brought to light medically. I know that it is getting worse the older I get. Getting harder to be active.

I would say more power to any of you that gets this diagnosed before you get out.

Robert F. Dorr
05-03-2012, 12:36 AM
I was diagnosed with severe sleep apnea and use a CPAP. For what I was told during my MEB process is that Sleep Apnea is a condition that can get progressively worst as you get older and if you get it diagnosed while in service it will be rated service connected.

They where trying to take it off the list but Congress put a stop to that in 2007. In my case the AF assigned a code of EPTS (existing prior to service) to my condition but speaking with a few subject matter experts of VA disability claims they tell me that if it wasn't on my records prior to coming in I will get the 50%.

The social security administration also considers sleep apnea as a disability.

I wish I knew what is meant by MEB.

I hope to read a serious dialogue about sleep apnea here on this thread and would request the jokesters to go away, please. I was diagnosed a couple of weeks ago and have been using a CPAP mask -- I hate abbreviations, but I don't know what the letters stand for -- for about a week. I do not have difficulty falling asleep but I do not feel rested in the morning. My understanding is that the sleep apnea is preventing my brain from getting enough oxygen but that the mask changes the way I breathe and enables me to get more oxygen. The mask isn't especially uncomfortable. It never occurred to me that this was more than a minor annoyance.

This is most assuredly not something you have from birth. I began having the symptoms -- fatigued and wanting to sleep throughout the day after an apparent full night's sleep -- only about six to eight weeks ago. So I don't think it's a sure thing that this was "existing prior to service." In my case, I still don't understand whether I'm combatting a problem or merely combatting the symptoms associated with a problem.

I've never had the experience of having difficulty falling asleep.

From time to time, my opinion column in Air Force Times has been devoted to a medical or health issue. This would require having someone who is willing to be interviewed and have his story told.

It never occurred to me that sleep apnea is a disability or that anyone would receive disability payments for it.

Your introductory message is marred for me by my inability to decipher MEB. Help me out here.

Tak
05-03-2012, 12:36 AM
Okay we are about to get closer after this. First, most prolonged pain surely was my first
kidney stone, I thought I was going to die. They pumped me so full of drugs when they wheeled
me down for xrays, I was making vehicle sounds like BEEP BEEP when they backed up my wheel chair.
Worst, shorter most embarassing pain was the test they did years ago for apendicitis. They
wheeled me down to the big donut hole machine, turned me on side, a chick pumped my full of
white liquid in the anus and I had to hold it in, while holding my breathe through that damned
donut machine, after minutes, I got to let lose the liquid from said anus. I felt like I wanted to
get a rape kit after that and call momma. If I had to do it again, I would choose death by apendicitis
rather than the wrath of white liquid anus penetration via the donut hole of dook.

AND oh yeah, how could I forget the gall bladder scope through camera tube via the penis.
I walked it room and saw that tube and nearly crapped myself. They numbed my area and
lubbed the tube and shoved that damn thing in and the dr held me down...That was worse
than my colonoscopy, becuase for that I was knocked the hell out.

Tak
05-03-2012, 12:46 AM
I wish I knew what is meant by MEB.

I hope to read a serious dialogue about sleep apnea here on this thread and would request the jokesters to go away, please. I was diagnosed a couple of weeks ago and have been using a CPAP mask -- I hate abbreviations, but I don't know what the letters stand for -- for about a week. I do not have difficulty falling asleep but I do not feel rested in the morning. My understanding is that the sleep apnea is preventing my brain from getting enough oxygen but that the mask changes the way I breathe and enables me to get more oxygen. The mask isn't especially uncomfortable. It never occurred to me that this was more than a minor annoyance.

This is most assuredly not something you have from birth. I began having the symptoms -- fatigued and wanting to sleep throughout the day after an apparent full night's sleep -- only about six to eight weeks ago. So I don't think it's a sure thing that this was "existing prior to service." In my case, I still don't understand whether I'm combatting a problem or merely combatting the symptoms associated with a problem.

I've never had the experience of having difficulty falling asleep.

From time to time, my opinion column in Air Force Times has been devoted to a medical or health issue. This would require having someone who is willing to be interviewed and have his story told.

It never occurred to me that sleep apnea is a disability or that anyone would receive disability payments for it.

Your introductory message is marred for me by my inability to decipher MEB. Help me out here.

MEB is simply Medical Evaluation Board. It is feared by personnel becuase it could mean medical discharge
or medical retirement for individual. If you within 1 year, I believe they give you free pass on the MEB.
Me and wife both had test around same time, test results looked same, buy she had obstructed sleep
apnea and me only sleep distrubances. Meaning, her airway is blocked and she stops breathing, whereas
I am up like 100 times a night for unknown reason. We both use CPAP and its worked miracles. You can
see going from 20 events an hour to 5 and less as the years go. Trick is dialing in the mask and getting
comfortable. I also wear a mouth guard for grinding so it really sucks for me....youll be okay Bob, the
CPAP will make sleeping much better. My wife used to snore and gasp, now neither, she sleeps like a baby,
first ever doing so with machine. By the way, the sleep test is not cheap and the results are real.

Tak
05-03-2012, 12:49 AM
MEB is simply Medical Evaluation Board. It is feared by personnel becuase it could mean medical discharge
or medical retirement for individual. If you within 1 year, I believe they give you free pass on the MEB.
Me and wife both had test around same time, test results looked same, buy she had obstructed sleep
apnea and me only sleep distrubances. Meaning, her airway is blocked and she stops breathing, whereas
I am up like 100 times a night for unknown reason. We both use CPAP and its worked miracles. You can
see going from 20 events an hour to 5 and less as the years go. Trick is dialing in the mask and getting
comfortable. I also wear a mouth guard for grinding so it really sucks for me....youll be okay Bob, the
CPAP will make sleeping much better. My wife used to snore and gasp, now neither, she sleeps like a baby,
first ever doing so with machine. By the way, the sleep test is not cheap and the results are real.

also bob, it falls into the lung/respiratory disease area, as not breathing can be detremental to ones life.
Think about this, what do you do most of in life? I say sleep, usually lets says 8 hours out of a 24 day,
so it impacts 33 percent of ones life on a nightly basis, pretty serious I say.

KellyinAvon
05-03-2012, 12:55 AM
rainman will be along shortly to berate all of you bloodsucking va leaches.

I work at a VA Med Center. The Research Service has leaches. I've also heard they have an army of chain-smoking, drug abusing, alcoholic rats, but I can't confirm that one.

Robert F. Dorr
05-03-2012, 12:58 AM
MEB is simply Medical Evaluation Board. It is feared by personnel becuase it could mean medical discharge
or medical retirement for individual. If you within 1 year, I believe they give you free pass on the MEB.
Me and wife both had test around same time, test results looked same, buy she had obstructed sleep
apnea and me only sleep distrubances. Meaning, her airway is blocked and she stops breathing, whereas
I am up like 100 times a night for unknown reason. We both use CPAP and its worked miracles. You can
see going from 20 events an hour to 5 and less as the years go. Trick is dialing in the mask and getting
comfortable. I also wear a mouth guard for grinding so it really sucks for me....youll be okay Bob, the
CPAP will make sleeping much better. My wife used to snore and gasp, now neither, she sleeps like a baby,
first ever doing so with machine. By the way, the sleep test is not cheap and the results are real.

Thank you so much.

I appreciate your providing the details. This is not a fun thing to talk about.

My wife and I sleep at opposite ends of the house most nights. I sleep with the dog. My beloved Labrador retriever Autumn (who was banned from Air Force Times years ago -- long story) doesn't seem bothered by the mask at all. She snores but I don't think she has dog sleep apnea. I don't know whether I snore.

The first couple of times I used the mask, I believed I felt more rested shortly after waking up. I no longer feel that. I seem to be using the mask correctly and it seems to be functioning properly but I no longer have a sense that it is doing me any good.

I have no idea what the sleep test costs. I belong to a grand Ponzi scheme known as Medicare, under which young people go out and work their asses off all day long so they can pay my medical expenses. I never see a bill. I had the sleep study for two full nights, monitored and observed the whole time.

The mask I have, like so many medical products nowadays, is specifically aimed at Medicare beneficiaries. Many companies in the health field make their entire income from Medicare and do nothing to serve younger Americans.

I didn't mean to pooh-pooh the potential disability that may be associated with this affliction. The idea of not getting enough oxygen was scary enough to make me go out and have the tests and get the mask. But I honestly did not know it was considered a disability and did not know that, for some, it might involve a disability benefit.

Anyone out there have sleep apnea and willing to be interviewed about it?

KellyinAvon
05-03-2012, 01:07 AM
Thank you so much.

I appreciate your providing the details. This is not a fun thing to talk about.

My wife and I sleep at opposite ends of the house most nights. I sleep with the dog. My beloved Labrador retriever Autumn (who was banned from Air Force Times years ago -- long story) doesn't seem bothered by the mask at all. She snores but I don't think she has dog sleep apnea. I don't know whether I snore.

The first couple of times I used the mask, I believed I felt more rested shortly after waking up. I no longer feel that. I seem to be using the mask correctly and it seems to be functioning properly but I no longer have a sense that it is doing me any good.

I have no idea what the sleep test costs. I belong to a grand Ponzi scheme known as Medicare, under which young people go out and work their asses off all day long so they can pay my medical expenses. I never see a bill. I had the sleep study for two full nights, monitored and observed the whole time.

The mask I have, like so many medical products nowadays, is specifically aimed at Medicare beneficiaries. Many companies in the health field make their entire income from Medicare and do nothing to serve younger Americans.

I didn't mean to pooh-pooh the potential disability that may be associated with this affliction. The idea of not getting enough oxygen was scary enough to make me go out and have the tests and get the mask. But I honestly did not know it was considered a disability and did not know that, for some, it might involve a disability benefit.

Anyone out there have sleep apnea and willing to be interviewed about it?

I was diagnosed a little over a year ago (post retirement). Find a mask that works for you and stick with it. I used an OTC (over the counter, Bob :biggrin ) sleep med (generic benadryl works for most folks) for about a month or so until I could sleep with the crazy thing. By the way, if the power goes off in the night you will know it in a hurry.

Tak
05-03-2012, 01:10 AM
Thank you so much.

I appreciate your providing the details. This is not a fun thing to talk about.

My wife and I sleep at opposite ends of the house most nights. I sleep with the dog. My beloved Labrador retriever Autumn (who was banned from Air Force Times years ago -- long story) doesn't seem bothered by the mask at all. She snores but I don't think she has dog sleep apnea. I don't know whether I snore.

The first couple of times I used the mask, I believed I felt more rested shortly after waking up. I no longer feel that. I seem to be using the mask correctly and it seems to be functioning properly but I no longer have a sense that it is doing me any good.

I have no idea what the sleep test costs. I belong to a grand Ponzi scheme known as Medicare, under which young people go out and work their asses off all day long so they can pay my medical expenses. I never see a bill. I had the sleep study for two full nights, monitored and observed the whole time.

The mask I have, like so many medical products nowadays, is specifically aimed at Medicare beneficiaries. Many companies in the health field make their entire income from Medicare and do nothing to serve younger Americans.

I didn't mean to pooh-pooh the potential disability that may be associated with this affliction. The idea of not getting enough oxygen was scary enough to make me go out and have the tests and get the mask. But I honestly did not know it was considered a disability and did not know that, for some, it might involve a disability benefit.

Anyone out there have sleep apnea and willing to be interviewed about it?

well, there are settings on machine to check things like AHIs per hour. If yours is around 5, your doing well.
You can check whether there a leak and total hours slept, etc. There may be a card that can be taken
in for further analysis, will break down your sleep in detail. Basically it cant help but make things better as
it gives you more oxygen. I found out that when I am sick and coughing I cant keep that mask on. Overall, like
I said a major improvement, especially for my wife. Like I said, its measureable via the chip. I recommend someone explaining your test results from those two days in detail, as it will tell you if you snored, how long you entered various levels of sleep,
its very interesting. I bet you get some med people here to really go into details, I am just a hack.

Robert F. Dorr
05-03-2012, 01:15 AM
I was diagnosed a little over a year ago (post retirement). Find a mask that works for you and stick with it. I used an OTC (over the counter, Bob :biggrin ) sleep med (generic benadryl works for most folks) for about a month or so until I could sleep with the crazy thing. By the way, if the power goes off in the night you will know it in a hurry.

Thank you, KellyinAvon.

This is all new to me. I don't seem to have any difficulty sleeping with the mask. I guess we haven't had a power outage in the short time I've been using it.

How much should I worry about following the rigid instructions for daily washing and rinsing of the mask and hose and other maintenance on the machine? I never have good luck with machines.

When I had the sleep study, we had this conversation:

Him:
"We want you to come here and spend a night sleeping here while being instrumented and monitored. We want you to do exactly the same thing you do when you sleep at home. We want it to be as close to sleeping at home as possible."

Me:
"Gee, that sounds terrific. What time do you want the dog and me to show up?"

Him:
"What? This is a medical facility! You can't have a dog in here!"

Me:
Then it won't be exactly the same as sleeping at home."

Tak
05-03-2012, 01:24 AM
Thank you, KellyinAvon.

This is all new to me. I don't seem to have any difficulty sleeping with the mask. I guess we haven't had a power outage in the short time I've been using it.

How much should I worry about following the rigid instructions for daily washing and rinsing of the mask and hose and other maintenance on the machine? I never have good luck with machines.

When I had the sleep study, we had this conversation:

Him:
"We want you to come here and spend a night sleeping here while being instrumented and monitored. We want you to do exactly the same thing you do when you sleep at home. We want it to be as close to sleeping at home as possible."

Me:
"Gee, that sounds terrific. What time do you want the dog and me to show up?"

Him:
"What? This is a medical facility! You can't have a dog in here!"

Me:
Then it won't be exactly the same as sleeping at home."

We only use distilled water. you can also get replacement face pieces as well.

KellyinAvon
05-03-2012, 01:33 AM
We only use distilled water. you can also get replacement face pieces as well.

There's a filter that'll need replacing occasionally too.

Ripcord
05-03-2012, 03:22 AM
How many people at age 18 have something like this? I'm willing to bet few. In my case, it was first noticed when I was about 32 years old, when a chick I was banging at the time said I stopped breathing in my sleep and it scared the crap outta her. None of my previous roomies had mentioned anything similar to that, except that I used to snore really loud.


I bet allot more than know it. Once I was diagnosed I looked into it a bit and found out that sleep medicine is a relatively new discipline. Not allot of people know about the detrimental effects of not getting proper sleep. The guy that setup my CPAP was actually ran the sleep lab on USAFA where I got diagnosed. He was like a sleep medicine super nerd and explained every question I had. Once I started asking around I would say 50% or more of the [older] people at my work have it. I was blown away by the sheer number...which makes me wonder what will happen in a decade or two when more research is done in sleep medicine and the AF finds out 60% of its members qualify...? Most the people I know found out right before they retired....Hmmmmmmm.

BL- If you snore you probably show at least the symptoms of Sleep Apnea and should get it checked out sooner then later. you don't have to be a walking zombie during the day to have sleep apnea. I am evidence of that.

Regarding the MEB. Mine ended up being a C1 code which basically means if I PCS or deploy to certain locations I might need an extra waiver to allow me to do so. Essentially the doc said the place needs to have stable power (for the CPAP). No biggy I can still serve out until retirement.

Robert F. Dorr
05-03-2012, 11:03 AM
I bet allot more than know it. Once I was diagnosed I looked into it a bit and found out that sleep medicine is a relatively new discipline. Not allot of people know about the detrimental effects of not getting proper sleep. The guy that setup my CPAP was actually ran the sleep lab on USAFA where I got diagnosed. He was like a sleep medicine super nerd and explained every question I had. Once I started asking around I would say 50% or more of the [older] people at my work have it. I was blown away by the sheer number...which makes me wonder what will happen in a decade or two when more research is done in sleep medicine and the AF finds out 60% of its members qualify...? Most the people I know found out right before they retired....Hmmmmmmm.

BL- If you snore you probably show at least the symptoms of Sleep Apnea and should get it checked out sooner then later. you don't have to be a walking zombie during the day to have sleep apnea. I am evidence of that.

Regarding the MEB. Mine ended up being a C1 code which basically means if I PCS or deploy to certain locations I might need an extra waiver to allow me to do so. Essentially the doc said the place needs to have stable power (for the CPAP). No biggy I can still serve out until retirement.

I'm interested in writing something about sleep apnea, CPAP and related issues as they apply to current, former and retired Air Force members and their families.

Please keep giving me ideas. I don't have to use anyone's name but if anybody out there is willing to be quoted by name, let me know: robert.f.dorr@cox.net. Thanks to all for improving my understanding of this condition I've been newly diagnosed with. Ripcord, I never had any idea there was a discipline in the medical field known as sleep medicine. You can probably thank Medicare for providing a financial incentive for doctors and companies to work in this field. Unfortunately, Ripcord, I don't know what a BL is.

Just a few short weeks ago, I had never heard of sleep medicine, the mask, or a CPAP machine.

Now, I'm finding that lots of people have sleep apnea and are using the mask.

Thanks to Tak's useful reminder, I popped into the grocery store at 6:00 a.m. to get some distilled water. The very nice lady at the register immediately asked if I was using a CPAP machine, told me she'd been doing it for nine years, and looked at me as if I was the new kid on the block. She's a very charming, somewhat overweight black woman who may be in her mid-forties and has a sister who uses the machine and the mask, too. I'll call her Grocery Lady. Along with some of you here, she has just become my mentor.

I have a ResMed full face mask that is in some ways a little reminiscent of the mask I wore the last time I flew in the back seat of an F-15E Strike Eagle although, as you know, this one is not an oxygen mask but a pressure air mask.

My machine is a Philips Respironics REMstar Auto-A-Flex. It seems to have been very cleverly designed. It makes minimal sound when in use. It does require some maintenance. KellyinAvon, I can't remember what they told me about the filter so I'll need to figure out what I'm supposed to be doing about that.

My machine was provided on a "rent to own" basis by Bay State Medical, Inc., which monitors my use of it electronically. Apparently in order for the company to receive its payment from Medicare, monitoring must show that I use the device a minimum of four hours per night.

Some points that came out in my conversation with Grocery Lady:

She seemed to feel that using the distilled water was causing her some discomfort, apparently creating more moisture than she wants. She strongly implied that you can use your CPAP machine without using the water at all. This sounds counter to what I was told in my briefing. Comments, anyone?

She seemed to suggest that it is a big mistake to do any sleeping, any time, without using the mask -- even a short snooze during the day. I'm not sure why. I don't get that, in fact, and wonder if I really need to strap on the mask every single time I want some shut-eye. Comments, anyone?

Again, I can't say how this condition affects other people -- especially active-duty members who need to be deployable and may need to serve in austere locations -- but I am very interested in learning more. It could be that sleep apnea has something in common with autism, meaning that it was there among us all along and only recently started to receive our notice. (We have a severely autistic grandson and that inspired several Air Force Times columns about how special needs can affect military families).

In my case, I regard the whole thing as less worrisome than other persistent health issues (acid reflux, bad knees, arthritis everywhere in my body, enlarged prostate) and more a nuisance than a disability -- but I mean no aspersion on anyone to whom it's more serious. In my case, at an age when I have outlived all my best friends, I feel fortunate to have never experienced any problem involving heart or lungs -- but all this other stuff is starting to become burdensome.

So how does sleep apnea affect the Air Force? The lives of the airmen and family members who have it? The ability to work, advance, and deploy?

How does it affect retired members and their families?

Tell me more, my friends.

This is a whole new world for me.

alter ego
05-03-2012, 12:13 PM
I have been using a sleep cpap machine for 7 years now.

My thearpist briefed me to always wear the machine even when napping so your body stays used to it.
The manual for my machine states to use distilled water and I can adjust the humidity level for arid areas or not use water in very humid areas. I replaced filters, seals, mask and hoses every 6 months - year per the manual and have no trouble with mine.

I have deployed with mine a couple of times and it took my tent mates/trailer mate a couple of days to get used to the sound. I had to check in with the MDG every few weeks but no real problems with it.
I know there are a few locations that I can't deploy to because of it but hit all my deployments as scheduled.

At first it was very discomforting since i had to sleep in a position i wasnt used to and remain in that position the entire night.
I added a thin pillow to put between my legs and since then I get a more restfull sleep than what i was getting, everything improved.

Being single, its something that is a "negative" that a potentail partner sees and my parents thought i was vaccuuming my room in the middle of the night when i first visited them with it =)

You have to check with Medicate/Tricare about the replacement of items to see if they are covered or not.

Robert F. Dorr
05-03-2012, 12:22 PM
Does anyone have a story about how sleep apnea was discovered? In my case, the problem was that I felt fatigued all the time. What about you? What was happening to you that prompted you to seek help?

alter ego, thank you for increasing my understanding. But what's an MDG? What sleep position were you accustomed to, and what did you change to? I sleep lying on my side and adding the mask doesn't make that any harder to do.

alter ego
05-03-2012, 12:30 PM
Sorry MDG = Medical Group. When I deploy, the medical personnel take a hard look at me/my conditions prior to and when I arrive to see if they can support the treatments for what is wrong with me.

I was one of those who starts on one side of the bed on my stomach with my head at the headboard and woke up somewhere else on the bed wondering how I got there. Sleeping on my side hurt at first but I got used to it.

Drackore
05-03-2012, 01:17 PM
I was tired all the time and nodding off at work (first duty station). I would go home for lunch every day and take a nap to get through the day, nap when I got home, spend time with my newborn, and go to bed at night. Of course doctors were telling me to stop napping so much - exercise more. So I did that. About a year into the assignment they had me hooked up to some heart monitor. Everytime I felt so tired that I would near fall over I was to hit a button. Negative results there. Finally a sleep study where the techs said "Worst case ever". Next thing I know I am using a CPAP. That didn't help, could never keep that thing on my face. Then they recommended a surgery to widen my nostrils. The recovery for that sucked (nose packed in spints and gauze for a month) but man, when they took that stuff out...I felt like I could run a marathon. Sadly, it's not a permanent solution, seeing as I am back to snoring and feeling tired again. I guess things grow back over time, but it got me through about 12 years.

One thing I hate about the sleep studies and the mask were mentioned above: sleep positions. Can't sleep on my side during a sleep study, and now with my current back injury I have to sleep on my side. One thing is for certain - never do that mask again. I'll do UPPP surgery before I even consider it. So uncomfortable for something you are to use "the rest of your life".


Does anyone have a story about how sleep apnea was discovered? In my case, the problem was that I felt fatigued all the time. What about you? What was happening to you that prompted you to seek help?

alter ego, thank you for increasing my understanding. But what's an MDG? What sleep position were you accustomed to, and what did you change to? I sleep lying on my side and adding the mask doesn't make that any harder to do.

insidiousbookworm
05-03-2012, 01:33 PM
I was diagnosed last year, just prior to a deployment. The clinic was going to med board me, but as I was 2 weeks from leaving for the AOR, they skipped it.

I don't believe that I had this before I came it. I think that I first started having issues about 5 years ago. Nothing drastic--I don't do the loud snoring, or gasping, or anything like that. I just wake up a lot. I'm at the very bottom of the obstructive sleep apnea scale; very mild case. I did one sleep study with a CPAP, and absolutely hated it. My lab reports stated that a dental device could also be used, so I got our dental clinic here to make one of those up for me. Third sleep study was done with me wearing the device, and it apparently works. I don't seem to wake up much, but I still don't really feel rested.

I did eventually get MEB'd--only because I got an assignment right after I got back from deployment. I tried to get medically cleared to PCS, and the doc was going to just sign me off, but he called AFPC. AFPC said "ABSOLUTELY MUST BE MED BOARDED." Fortunately, the clinic never coded me, since I had an assignment and they didn't feel I should lose it. So fast track MEB that actually took 2 months to get done. Luckily, the dental clinic and our MEB folks here really helped me out, and everything got resolved. Final determination--AFPC said sleep apnea that does not require CPAP does not need to be MEB'd--with directly contrasts with what they told the clinic previously. Oh well. It's done and good.

Rainmaker
05-03-2012, 03:51 PM
Stupid shit like this is the reason insurance premiums have gone up 130% in the last decade. And the medical insurance lobby goes crazy whenever anyone tries to change it. Whole medical industries like "sleep study clinics" have sprung up to tap into the available money. An Average family of 4 is now paying $15,000 a year in medical insurance premiums.

Tricare was supposedly outsourced from DOD to save money. But, now 10 years later can't be supported without significant premium increases to vets and there's not going to be any money to give our active duty forces pay raises for the next 3 years.

Does it strike anyone else as odd that supposed "research" by the sleep industry states that as many as 30% of Americans have sleep apenea (they just don't know it yet). What incentive would they have to tell you that sleeping less as you age (once considered normal) is now a serious condition?

Rainmaker
05-03-2012, 04:06 PM
I was diagnosed last year, just prior to a deployment. The clinic was going to med board me, but as I was 2 weeks from leaving for the AOR, they skipped it.

I don't believe that I had this before I came it. I think that I first started having issues about 5 years ago. Nothing drastic--I don't do the loud snoring, or gasping, or anything like that. I just wake up a lot. I'm at the very bottom of the obstructive sleep apnea scale; very mild case. I did one sleep study with a CPAP, and absolutely hated it. My lab reports stated that a dental device could also be used, so I got our dental clinic here to make one of those up for me. Third sleep study was done with me wearing the device, and it apparently works. I don't seem to wake up much, but I still don't really feel rested.

I did eventually get MEB'd--only because I got an assignment right after I got back from deployment. I tried to get medically cleared to PCS, and the doc was going to just sign me off, but he called AFPC. AFPC said "ABSOLUTELY MUST BE MED BOARDED." Fortunately, the clinic never coded me, since I had an assignment and they didn't feel I should lose it. So fast track MEB that actually took 2 months to get done. Luckily, the dental clinic and our MEB folks here really helped me out, and everything got resolved. Final determination--AFPC said sleep apnea that does not require CPAP does not need to be MEB'd--with directly contrasts with what they told the clinic previously. Oh well. It's done and good.

How did they diagnose you prior to deployment? what did you tell them to lead them to that decision? If this is really such a serious condition, then it should automatically disqualify you from military service. Then you wouldn't have all these people claiming it unless it was truly disabling. I would like Robert F. Dorr to write an article about how many Airman were tasked with short notice deployments to Iraq and Afghanistan in place of other Airman suddenly diagnosed with sleep apenea and deemed non-deployable.

insidiousbookworm
05-03-2012, 04:16 PM
How did they diagnose you prior to deployment? what did you tell them to lead them to that decision? If this is really such a serious condition, then it should automatically disqualify you from military service. Then you wouldn't have all these people claiming it unless it was truly disabling. I would like Robert F. Dorr to write an article about how many Airman were tasked with short notice deployments to Iraq and Afghanistan in place of other Airman suddenly diagnosed with sleep apenea and deemed non-deployable.

A few months prior to being selected to deploy, I mentioned sleep troubles during a PHA, and was set up with an appointment. The doc arranged a sleep study. A couple weeks after that, the sleep clinic called me in for another study, this time with a CPAP.

Then I was selected for the deployment. I didn't hear anything back on the study results until I was in getting my final medical clearance to deploy. At that point, I was ready to go and didn't want to screw someone else over, so they let me go without doing anything at the time.

So, one--I was being seen for this prior to even being notified that I was deploying, and two--I went and made sure that no one got short tasked.

And I have yet to see anyone with sleep apnea not be able to deploy. I had a troop in Kuwait that went with his CPAP.

SomeRandomGuy
05-03-2012, 04:18 PM
Stupid shit like this is the reason insurance premiums have gone up 130% in the last decade. And the medical insurance lobby goes crazy whenever anyone tries to change it. Whole medical industries like "sleep study clinics" have sprung up to tap into the available money. An Average family of 4 is now paying $15,000 a year in medical insurance premiums.

Tricare was supposedly outsourced from DOD to save money. But, now 10 years later can't be supported without significant premium increases to vets and there's not going to be any money to give our active duty forces pay raises for the next 3 years.

Does it strike anyone else as odd that supposed "research" by the sleep industry states that as many as 30% of Americans have sleep apenea (they just don't know it yet). What incentive would they have to tell you that sleeping less as you age (once considered normal) is now a serious condition?

I understand where you are going with this but Im pretty sure you do not actually know enough about the subject to have a valid opinion. Im not here to support the sleep apnea crowd. It does annoy me that sleep apnea is always the disease that gets targeted by people trying to scam the system. With that being said it is also a valid disease.

Regardless of your opinion on sleep apnea the reason people are not getting active duty pay raises has nothing to do with tricare premiums. When the economy was good the military had to provide incentives to get people to stay. Congress authorized a 3%-3.5% pay raise for several years to make Active Duty pay line up with private sector wages. At this point active duty pay has pretty much surpassed private sector wages. That is the reason people are not getting out. Take your average SrA who has been in 4 years is married and lives off base collecting BAH. His/her take home pay would be the same as someone making close to $50k per year. Try to find another job that is willing to pay a 22 year old kid with no degree 50K per year. Whenever the economy rebounds and private sector jobs become lucrative you will see a mass exodus and then military pay raises. Until then just be happy with what you have.

Also not sure where you get your data on the average family of 4 paying $15,000 per year in medical premiums. $15,000/12 months= $1,250 per month or if you want to break it down differently $15,000/26 paychecks (52 weeks in a year)= $576.92. So you are trying to tell me the average family pays $576.92 every paycheck? The company I work for right now (a DoD contractor) pays the bulk of my insurance. I pay just under $250 and they pay around $1000. Most companies work that way. The last company I worked for I paid around $350 month and they paid roughly $500 but the insurance was not near as good. Your statement shows me that you do not even understand the definiton of the term average. Some families pay almost nothing. That would mean there have to be just as many people paying over $1000 every two weeks in medical insurance premiums. If that were actually the case those people would opt out of the insurance and simply buy a Healthcare Flex Spending Account.

insidiousbookworm
05-03-2012, 04:26 PM
Double posted...

Rainmaker
05-03-2012, 04:33 PM
I understand where you are going with this but Im pretty sure you do not actually know enough about the subject to have a valid opinion. Im not here to support the sleep apnea crowd. It does annoy me that sleep apnea is always the disease that gets targeted by people trying to scam the system. With that being said it is also a valid disease.

Regardless of your opinion on sleep apnea the reason people are not getting active duty pay raises has nothing to do with tricare premiums. When the economy was good the military had to provide incentives to get people to stay. Congress authorized a 3%-3.5% pay raise for several years to make Active Duty pay line up with private sector wages. At this point active duty pay has pretty much surpassed private sector wages. That is the reason people are not getting out. Take your average SrA who has been in 4 years is married and lives off base collecting BAH. His/her take home pay would be the same as someone making close to $50k per year. Try to find another job that is willing to pay a 22 year old kid with no degree 50K per year. Whenever the economy rebounds and private sector jobs become lucrative you will see a mass exodus and then military pay raises. Until then just be happy with what you have.

Also not sure where you get your data on the average family of 4 paying $15,000 per year in medical premiums. $15,000/12 months= $1,250 per month or if you want to break it down differently $15,000/26 paychecks (52 weeks in a year)= $576.92. So you are trying to tell me the average family pays $576.92 every paycheck? The company I work for right now (a DoD contractor) pays the bulk of my insurance. I pay just under $250 and they pay around $1000. Most companies work that way. The last company I worked for I paid around $350 month and they paid roughly $500 but the insurance was not near as good. Your statement shows me that you do not even understand the definiton of the term average. Some families pay almost nothing. That would mean there have to be just as many people paying over $1000 every two weeks in medical insurance premiums. If that were actually the case those people would opt out of the insurance and simply buy a Healthcare Flex Spending Account.


Yes, you're correct in that the employer pays the bulk of it. But, ultimately either way it suppresses wages for the employee. So, whether the employee writes the check or the employer writes the check. the employee gets less in the long run.

I agree with you. the reason active duty wages went up was due to the wars (the most outsourced in history). However, it was not to remain competitive with the private sector wages it was to remain somewhat competive with DoD contractor wages. DoD contractors are highly subsidized. The main reason the Bush clan funded the war with supplemental dollars was because, you can't increase end strength or hire permanent civilians with supplemental dollars. it's just more corporate welfare and now we're broke.

Robert F. Dorr
05-03-2012, 06:28 PM
I would like Robert F. Dorr to write an article about how many Airman were tasked with short notice deployments to Iraq and Afghanistan in place of other Airman suddenly diagnosed with sleep apenea and deemed non-deployable.

A few weeks ago, I didn't know sleep apnea existed.

Now, I'm being told (by some) that it's a scam to soak up Tricare and Medicare money.

But Rainmaker seems to want to have it both ways. Either it's not a real ailment at all or it's so serious as to be disabling. I never thought either of those things was true.

I think Rainmaker is referring to the opinion column I write for Air Force Times and not to the articles I write for other publications. I don't write articles for Air Force Times.

The only way I can write the opinion column rainmaker describes is to find an example that can be proven. If Rainmaker knows of a situation where an airman had to fill in for someone else on short notice because of this condition, please tell us where and when. If you can find a real-life example for me that would make great reading.

I'm still trying to learn my way into a condition that one person here believes is a disability and one believes is imaginary. I don't know the truth. I know only that two doctors told me my brain isn't getting enough oxygen and one of them told me HE would sleep better at night if I would wear the mask. If medical practitioners have sold me something I don't need, how can I know for certain?

Friends, please do not emulate the Air Force by capitalizing the word airman. It is not a proper noun.

Rainmaker
05-03-2012, 07:02 PM
A few weeks ago, I didn't know sleep apnea existed.

Now, I'm being told (by some) that it's a scam to soak up Tricare and Medicare money.

But Rainmaker seems to want to have it both ways. Either it's not a real ailment at all or it's so serious as to be disabling. I never thought either of those things was true.

I think Rainmaker is referring to the opinion column I write for Air Force Times and not to the articles I write for other publications. I don't write articles for Air Force Times.

The only way I can write the opinion column rainmaker describes is to find an example that can be proven. If Rainmaker knows of a situation where an airman had to fill in for someone else on short notice because of this condition, please tell us where and when. If you can find a real-life example for me that would make great reading.

I'm still trying to learn my way into a condition that one person here believes is a disability and one believes is imaginary. I don't know the truth. I know only that two doctors told me my brain isn't getting enough oxygen and one of them told me HE would sleep better at night if I would wear the mask. If medical practitioners have sold me something I don't need, how can I know for certain?

Friends, please do not emulate the Air Force by capitalizing the word airman. It is not a proper noun.


Yes, Robert F. Dorr. Rainmaker has first hand knowledge of an airman that was unable to deploy to Salerno, Afghanistan and another airman was tasked with short notice (less than a week) to fill his slot. Rainmaker is of the opinion that if you are not 100% world-wide deployable for a period of more than 6 months. You should be Seperated from the military.

SomeRandomGuy
05-03-2012, 07:05 PM
A few weeks ago, I didn't know sleep apnea existed.

Now, I'm being told (by some) that it's a scam to soak up Tricare and Medicare money.

But Rainmaker seems to want to have it both ways. Either it's not a real ailment at all or it's so serious as to be disabling. I never thought either of those things was true.I think Rainmaker is referring to the opinion column I write for Air Force Times and not to the articles I write for other publications. I don't write articles for Air Force Times.

The only way I can write the opinion column rainmaker describes is to find an example that can be proven. If Rainmaker knows of a situation where an airman had to fill in for someone else on short notice because of this condition, please tell us where and when. If you can find a real-life example for me that would make great reading.

I'm still trying to learn my way into a condition that one person here believes is a disability and one believes is imaginary. I don't know the truth. I know only that two doctors told me my brain isn't getting enough oxygen and one of them told me HE would sleep better at night if I would wear the mask. If medical practitioners have sold me something I don't need, how can I know for certain?

Friends, please do not emulate the Air Force by capitalizing the word airman. It is not a proper noun.

For whats its worth I believe it is both a real ailment and also a very common avenue used to scam the VA system. People who have been around the military very long know all about the rumors you hear about ways to make a buck off the government. For example padding your tarvel voucher with expenses under $75 that do not require a receipt or being issued gear for a deployment then selling it because you were already issued the same or similar gear on your last deployment only 2 years ago.

The fact is people like to find loopholes and exploit them. The VA rating sleep apnea at 50% naturally gave it a huge bullseye when you consider how relatively easy it is to be diagnosed with the disease. The people ultimately harmed by this scam are the people legitimately ailed with sleep apnea. I have seen people who have taken the sleep study and not been diagnosed simply wait a few years and re-take the study. The diagnosis seems to be completely the opinion of the person administering the staudy. These people are also the same people who profit from selling the CPAP and perforiming follow up appointments. That type of system naturally leads to corruption which causes anger from people like Rainmaker who are tired of scammers.

Robert F. Dorr
05-03-2012, 07:07 PM
Yes, Robert F. Dorr. Rainmaker has first hand knowledge of an airman that was unable to deploy to Salerno, Afghanistan and another airman was tasked with short notice (less than a week) to fill his slot. Rainmaker is of the opinion that if you are not 100% world-wide deployable for a period of more than 6 months. You should be Seperated from the military.

My third grade English book taught me that there is a rat in separate.

I agree that if you are not 100 per cent deployable you should be separated, except in extraordinary circumstances. There should be exceptions for anyone who is wounded or injured on duty and is capable of performing most tasks in most places.

What is the reason the airman was unable to deploy to Afghanistan?

Robert F. Dorr
05-03-2012, 07:14 PM
The fact is people like to find loopholes and exploit them. The VA rating sleep apnea at 50% naturally gave it a huge bullseye when you consider how relatively easy it is to be diagnosed with the disease. The people ultimately harmed by this scam are the people legitimately ailed with sleep apnea. I have seen people who have taken the sleep study and not been diagnosed simply wait a few years and re-take the study. The diagnosis seems to be completely the opinion of the person administering the staudy. These people are also the same people who profit from selling the CPAP and perforiming follow up appointments. That type of system naturally leads to corruption which causes anger from people like Rainmaker who are tired of scammers.

The people who administered the sleep study to me did not have any vested interest in reaching a conclusion that I did not need their help. That was, of course, in the civilian world, where I live. In the military world, I would hope that you could receive a sleep study from an impartial expert. I don't know. Can you?

If you're in my situation, where you've been diagnosed by someone who makes his living treating sleep apnea and the diagnosis is supported by your own personal doctor, how do you know what to believe?

I got the diagnosis because I was feeling fatigued all the time, but maybe it was caused by something else -- like reading these forums. But what if there's nothing wrong with my sleep? How can I know?

On the first day, I thought I could detect a difference after using the mask. That feeling lasted one day.

Rainmaker
05-03-2012, 07:20 PM
My third grade English book taught me that there is a rat in separate.

I agree that if you are not 100 per cent deployable you should be separated, except in extraordinary circumstances. There should be exceptions for anyone who is wounded or injured on duty and is capable of performing most tasks in most places.

What is the reason the airman was unable to deploy to Afghanistan?


Well, Robert F. Dorr, If nitpicking spelling makes you feel relevant than you and your third grade English teacher can have at it. However, here at Harvard we never end a sentence with a preposition.

I agree with you that there should be exeptions for anyone who is wounded or injured on duty and can still contribute.

The airman was unable to deploy to FOB Salerno after being diagnosed with Sleep apnea

Robert F. Dorr
05-03-2012, 07:24 PM
The airman was unable to deploy to FOB Salerno after being diagnosed with Sleep apnea

When?

Do you think the airman was faking or do you think he or she had a real ailment?

garhkal
05-03-2012, 07:39 PM
Does anyone have a story about how sleep apnea was discovered? In my case, the problem was that I felt fatigued all the time. What about you? What was happening to you that prompted you to seek help?

alter ego, thank you for increasing my understanding. But what's an MDG? What sleep position were you accustomed to, and what did you change to? I sleep lying on my side and adding the mask doesn't make that any harder to do.

Of the 4 people i know personally who have it, 2 were discovered during their medical outprocessing, one was due to him refering himself to a sleep study due to his wife recommending it, and the last was due to chronic fatigue...


Stupid shit like this is the reason insurance premiums have gone up 130% in the last decade. And the medical insurance lobby goes crazy whenever anyone tries to change it. Whole medical industries like "sleep study clinics" have sprung up to tap into the available money. An Average family of 4 is now paying $15,000 a year in medical insurance premiums.

Tricare was supposedly outsourced from DOD to save money. But, now 10 years later can't be supported without significant premium increases to vets and there's not going to be any money to give our active duty forces pay raises for the next 3 years.

Does it strike anyone else as odd that supposed "research" by the sleep industry states that as many as 30% of Americans have sleep apenea (they just don't know it yet). What incentive would they have to tell you that sleeping less as you age (once considered normal) is now a serious condition?

I liken it to the way ADD/ADHD is overdiagnosed...

ROAD
05-03-2012, 07:42 PM
Jesus Christ guys you can't fake sleep apnea!!! for fucks sake how did you people graduate HS. To be diagnosed you HAVE to do a sleep study where you are hooked up to multiple machines that monitor every breathe, every heart beat while you are sleeping...so unless you are a super secret squirrel ninja, you can't control that!!! the machine KNOWS when you are sleeping, it tracks everything. You are the same people who bash certain political ideas without researching them only to realize both parties support it or the claim was totally false...I'm officially embarrassed to be associated with you morons

Rainmaker
05-03-2012, 07:45 PM
When?

Do you think the airman was faking or do you think he or she had a real ailment?


2009. It doesn't matter what I think about it. I think it's B.S. 10 years ago, no one had heard of Sleep Apnea. Now all of sudden upwards of 30% of the population supposedly has this chronic incurable condition. I submit that perhaps some of these common "disabilities" such as Sinusitis, Sleep Apnea and ADHD are being over-diagnosed for the medical industry to make money.

Rainmaker
05-03-2012, 07:49 PM
I was tired all the time and nodding off at work (first duty station). I would go home for lunch every day and take a nap to get through the day, nap when I got home, spend time with my newborn, and go to bed at night. Of course doctors were telling me to stop napping so much - exercise more. So I did that. About a year into the assignment they had me hooked up to some heart monitor. Everytime I felt so tired that I would near fall over I was to hit a button. Negative results there. Finally a sleep study where the techs said "Worst case ever". Next thing I know I am using a CPAP. That didn't help, could never keep that thing on my face. Then they recommended a surgery to widen my nostrils. The recovery for that sucked (nose packed in spints and gauze for a month) but man, when they took that stuff out...I felt like I could run a marathon. Sadly, it's not a permanent solution, seeing as I am back to snoring and feeling tired again. I guess things grow back over time, but it got me through about 12 years.

One thing I hate about the sleep studies and the mask were mentioned above: sleep positions. Can't sleep on my side during a sleep study, and now with my current back injury I have to sleep on my side. One thing is for certain - never do that mask again. I'll do UPPP surgery before I even consider it. So uncomfortable for something you are to use "the rest of your life".

That's because you snore more on your back.

MACHINE666
05-03-2012, 07:51 PM
2009. It doesn't matter what I think about it. I think it's B.S. 10 years ago, no one had heard of Sleep Apnea. Now all of sudden upwards of 30% of the population supposedly has this chronic incurable condition. I submit that perhaps some of these common "disabilities" such as Sinusitis, Sleep Apnea and ADHD are being over-diagnosed for the medical industry to make money.


http://farm5.staticflickr.com/4083/5055032357_69d1d1be72.jpg

Obvious troll is obvious

MACHINE666
05-03-2012, 08:05 PM
Jesus Christ guys you can't fake sleep apnea!!! for fucks sake how did you people graduate HS. To be diagnosed you HAVE to do a sleep study where you are hooked up to multiple machines that monitor every breathe, every heart beat while you are sleeping...so unless you are a super secret squirrel ninja, you can't control that!!! the machine KNOWS when you are sleeping, it tracks everything. You are the same people who bash certain political ideas without researching them only to realize both parties support it or the claim was totally false...I'm officially embarrassed to be associated with you morons

Hear, hear!!

Since Rainmaker thinks we're all full of shit, perhaps this will change his tune:

http://www.webmd.com/sleep-disorders/understanding-obstructive-sleep-apnea-syndrome

If WebMD is too egalitarian for you Rainmaker, just go over to the JAMA website and punch in sleep apnea.

Yeah, we're all just a bunch of fakers who want to empty your wallet.

Shrike
05-03-2012, 08:55 PM
For whats its worth I believe it is both a real ailment and also a very common avenue used to scam the VA system. People who have been around the military very long know all about the rumors you hear about ways to make a buck off the government. For example padding your tarvel voucher with expenses under $75 that do not require a receipt or being issued gear for a deployment then selling it because you were already issued the same or similar gear on your last deployment only 2 years ago.

The fact is people like to find loopholes and exploit them. The VA rating sleep apnea at 50% naturally gave it a huge bullseye when you consider how relatively easy it is to be diagnosed with the disease. The people ultimately harmed by this scam are the people legitimately ailed with sleep apnea. I have seen people who have taken the sleep study and not been diagnosed simply wait a few years and re-take the study. The diagnosis seems to be completely the opinion of the person administering the staudy. These people are also the same people who profit from selling the CPAP and perforiming follow up appointments. That type of system naturally leads to corruption which causes anger from people like Rainmaker who are tired of scammers.

I'd still like to know how someone without sleep apnea can fake it during the sleep study.

imported_oih82w8
05-03-2012, 10:25 PM
How did they diagnose you prior to deployment? what did you tell them to lead them to that decision? If this is really such a serious condition, then it should automatically disqualify you from military service. Then you wouldn't have all these people claiming it unless it was truly disabling. I would like Robert F. Dorr to write an article about how many Airman were tasked with short notice deployments to Iraq and Afghanistan in place of other Airman suddenly diagnosed with sleep apenea and deemed non-deployable.

I know of at least one, that I got to deploy for, short notice. :tsk

jarhead dad
05-03-2012, 10:30 PM
Sorry MDG = Medical Group. When I deploy, the medical personnel take a hard look at me/my conditions prior to and when I arrive to see if they can support the treatments for what is wrong with me.

I was one of those who starts on one side of the bed on my stomach with my head at the headboard and woke up somewhere else on the bed wondering how I got there. Sleeping on my side hurt at first but I got used to it.

See that's my problem, I have always been a restless sleeper, I and constantly flipping from side to side, back to stomach. I know I'll end up with a machine, but am not sure that the movements will stop, and that I won't tear the mask off during the night.

Ripcord
05-03-2012, 10:35 PM
Jesus Christ guys you can't fake sleep apnea!!! for fucks sake how did you people graduate HS. To be diagnosed you HAVE to do a sleep study where you are hooked up to multiple machines that monitor every breathe, every heart beat while you are sleeping...so unless you are a super secret squirrel ninja, you can't control that!!! the machine KNOWS when you are sleeping, it tracks everything. You are the same people who bash certain political ideas without researching them only to realize both parties support it or the claim was totally false...I'm officially embarrassed to be associated with you morons

You forgot they measure brain waves too...which is how the computer knows you are sleeping.

Catching up with the thread I was just about to post similar. You can't fake sleep apnea. You either demonstrate signs (to varying degrees) or you do not. There is no "gaming the system like faking an injury. Machines and numbers compared to established standards do not lie.

I think the hostility people take towards sleep apnea is like I said before...sleep medicine is so new people do not take it seriously.

For example. Do people know that sleep apnea can elevate your blood pressure through out the day? I didn't. But that's why I got checked out...elevated blood pressure at the Dental Clinic referred to medical! Sure enough went on CPAP after diagnosis and blood pressure stabilized. high/elevated blood pressure = bad for long term health. Proper sleep = lower blood pressure with no medication = GOOD.

Another interesting tidbit I learned was that even though people think they are getting proper sleep (like me) that is not always the case. Only a sleep study can truly tell. Sleep goes in cycles throughout the night. REM (rapid eye movement) sleep is the only time you are getting true rest. Sleep apnea = less REM sleep stages therefore = poor sleep and all the side effects that come along with it from high blood pressure to insomnia to death.

I haven't looked into why sleep apnea tends to occur (or maybe it's generally not diagnosed early) later in life but my guess is many cases it can be directly related to natural (or unatural) increases/redistribution of fatty tissue through out the body as we age. Genetics play into the this fatty tissue effects your airway.

It a well known FACT that one of the largest factors contributing to many adverse health conditions is extra weight. Just a few pounds makes a difference. It negatively effects and amplifies all negative aspects of ones physiological makeup and performance. Sleep is just one of of those aspects. I'm not saying everyone with sleep apnea is fat but I've yet to meet one (including myself) who isn't overwieght....

With that said I am currently in the process of losing 35lbs of excess ME that I've acquired over the last 5 years. Personall goal I hope to attain by August. I've always been a snorer even when I was skinny...just ask my wife. I doubt there will be another sleep study but when I asked the Doc if the apnea will go away with weight loss she said no once you have it you have it.

EDITED for grammar.

Measure Man
05-03-2012, 11:23 PM
I should've got tested before I retired. I don't really have any reason to think I have it, but I heard somewhere that something like 90% of people have it only most don't know it. I do occasionally wake up gagging...but I often do that even when I'm awake...I just choke on my saliva a lot.

Anyway, I don't get the service connection thing either really...and don't get the 50%, but maybe that's cuz I don't have it.

I mean, you get like 40% for losing a foot!

For the folks who have apnea, I guess my question would be...how do expect this will diminish your earning capacity when you retire? And isn't that what disability is for?

ROAD
05-03-2012, 11:52 PM
Hear, hear!!

Since Rainmaker thinks we're all full of shit, perhaps this will change his tune:

http://www.webmd.com/sleep-disorders/understanding-obstructive-sleep-apnea-syndrome

If WebMD is too egalitarian for you Rainmaker, just go over to the JAMA website and punch in sleep apnea.

Yeah, we're all just a bunch of fakers who want to empty your wallet.

I just glanced over those sites...but they seem to support everything I just said...you can NOT fake it you either have it or you don't...like cancer..or social skills

Tak
05-04-2012, 12:01 AM
well I'm in the 10% range of folks not diagnosed with sleep apnea,
I guess I didn't know how to stop breathing while sleeping.

Rainman is a Dillweed!

Ripcord
05-04-2012, 12:45 AM
For the folks who have apnea, I guess my question would be...how do expect this will diminish your earning capacity when you retire? And isn't that what disability is for?

I guess it would depend on the severity. 99% of people in the AF diagnosed with sleep apnea are MEBed and stay to retirement/separation. The rest who cannot control it with a CPAP or other means are medically separated. Some people die from sleep apnea. i.e. go to sleep and never wake up. Happened to that dude on Deadliest Catch and he was only 30 something!

I suppose a guy like me there will be no diminished earning capacity. A more severe case people may have issues with employers not liking people falling asleep at work, poor performance, poor health OR worse die one night in his sleep.

Robert F. Dorr
05-04-2012, 12:49 AM
I'm officially embarrassed to be associated with you morons

Yeah.

But when you say it's BS, what do you mean?

That there is no such ailment?

That there is, but it's over-diagnosed?

What?

This is going to be my column next week. I think Road makes a good point.

Ripcord
05-04-2012, 01:00 AM
I know I'll end up with a machine, but am not sure that the movements will stop, and that I won't tear the mask off during the night.

oh you will for sure. I think I've only ever slept completely through the night and woke up with my mask on twice in the 6 months I've had it. Both times I went to bed COMPLETELY exhausted. It take a few weeks to get used to but even now I usually wake up 2 or 3 AM and just take it off. According to the sleep geek I spoke of earlier successful CPAP use is considered as use from 4-6 hours per night 7 out of 10 days. If you are getting proper REM cycles you really only need to sleep for 4 hours typically.

Tak
05-04-2012, 01:15 AM
Yeah.

But when you say it's BS, what do you mean?

That there is no such ailment?

That there is, but it's over-diagnosed?

What?

This is going to be my column next week. I think Road makes a good point.

great, get exposure on something that helps, but will only bring scrutiny and mockery.
whats your goal here with the article, to entertain or inform. Is this a heavy hitting
topic for the troops...

Shrike
05-04-2012, 01:32 AM
great, get exposure on something that helps, but will only bring scrutiny and mockery.
whats your goal here with the article, to entertain or inform. Is this a heavy hitting
topic for the troops...

Exactly. This topic needs an article like Blutarski needs more voids to fill.

ROAD
05-04-2012, 03:51 AM
Yeah.

But when you say it's BS, what do you mean?

That there is no such ailment?

That there is, but it's over-diagnosed?

What?

This is going to be my column next week. I think Road makes a good point.

you might want to RE-Read my post...i said the exact opposite..that it is NOT BS..and that it can't be faked as others were saying....

BRUWIN
05-04-2012, 04:01 AM
you might want to RE-Read my post...i said the exact opposite..that it is NOT BS..and that it can't be faked as others were saying....

Yes it can be faked...I can fake being asleep when I should be awake with the best of them.

ScarlettGTO
05-04-2012, 04:06 AM
The dorm ho I slept with as an airman faked something...will she get disability for that if it is a believable faking because I really thought I did a good job that night. She sure fooled me and I am sure she could fool the VA if needed.

garhkal
05-04-2012, 06:01 AM
That's because you snore more on your back.

Which might be a way for them to 'fudge the statistics'.

Robert F. Dorr
05-04-2012, 09:02 AM
oh you will for sure. I think I've only ever slept completely through the night and woke up with my mask on twice in the 6 months I've had it. Both times I went to bed COMPLETELY exhausted. It take a few weeks to get used to but even now I usually wake up 2 or 3 AM and just take it off. According to the sleep geek I spoke of earlier successful CPAP use is considered as use from 4-6 hours per night 7 out of 10 days. If you are getting proper REM cycles you really only need to sleep for 4 hours typically.

So far nothing like this has happened to me. When I wake up, the mask is still attached the same as when I went to sleep. It's a minor annoyance but it isn't terribly uncomfortable.

Who's Blutarski?

Robert F. Dorr
05-04-2012, 02:07 PM
I think I've only ever slept completely through the night and woke up with my mask on twice in the 6 months I've had it. Both times I went to bed COMPLETELY exhausted. It take a few weeks to get used to but even now I usually wake up 2 or 3 AM and just take it off. According to the sleep geek I spoke of earlier successful CPAP use is considered as use from 4-6 hours per night 7 out of 10 days. If you are getting proper REM cycles you really only need to sleep for 4 hours typically.

I plead guilty to misreading an earlier post of yours, Ripcord, but I think I've got this one. This is different from my experience. I'm starting to develop a little groove across the bridge of my nose created by the very top part of the mask (anyone got a cure?) but otherwise I have been able to accommodate the mask fairly well and the dog doesn't mind it, either.

Here in these forums and outside in real life, I'm getting conflicting information as to whether I should wear the mask all of the time or only some of the time. I'm suddenly discovering that many people around me have sleep apnea -- the friend at the dog park I've known for years, Grocery Lady, the lady at the dry cleaners', a family acquaintance -- but no one ever mentioned it.

Do the members of this forum really object to seeing something in print on this subject? If so, this is the time to shout out.

Questions:

1. Ripcord, what is a "C1 assignment code"?

2. Ripcord, what's MEPS?

3. Bunch, when you say, "They were trying to take it off the list but Congress put a stop to that in 2007," do you mean a list of disabilities? What government agency maintains this list? The same list quoted elsewhere in this thread?

4. Bruwin, if you "don't see why the taxpayers should pay people to sleep" -- such as your airman who "was always nodding off" -- what would you want the Air Force to do with that airman? Would you want the airman to be discharged and to receive 50% disability pay?

5. WPNS, what is DFAS?

6. Machine666, what's UPPP?

7. Tak, if a military member can receive 50% disability pay for sleep apnea requiring the mask, what pay, if any, can a couple receive when the military spouse has the diagnosis?

8. Tak, what's an AHI?

9. KellyinAvon, how often do you change the filter?

10. Drackore., why can't you lie on your side during a sleep study? When I had mine they told me they would prefer for me to lie on my back face up, but they didn't mind when I rolled over on my side.

11. Insidiousbookworm, what's a PHA?

A big thank-you to everyone who has been supportive while I try to understand this better.

Sperry1989
05-04-2012, 02:29 PM
I will try and help with a couple of these.
MEPS= Military Entrance Processing Station. This is the place people come for their medical evaluation before starting basic training.
DFAS= Defense Finance and Accounting Service. An organization responsible for paying active duty and retired military personnel. They also handle DoD Civilian pay.

Ripcord
05-04-2012, 02:30 PM
Yes it can be faked...I can fake being asleep when I should be awake with the best of them.

I know your just fishin but while one may be able to fake sleeping around people, sleep monitoring equipment sees right past the BS. A sleep study is the only way you can actually get diagnosed with Sleep Apnea.

Like someone said you might be able to fake it if you have mad ninja skills or perhaps are a Tibetan monk or something. Sleep Apnea is an involuntary condition.

Ripcord
05-04-2012, 02:34 PM
A C1 assignment code is one of several assignment limitation codes big blue can slap on you for medical issues. From what my doc told me the majority of active duty sleep apnea cases in the AF are assigned C1.

A quick google search netted this article:
http://www.af.mil/news/story.asp?id=123021302

"
Under the Stratified Assignment Limitation Code C program, Airmen placed on Code C restriction now fall into one of three stratification levels:

C1: Airmen permanently and TDY assignment-eligible to global Department of Defense installations with medical treatment facilities. Generally, approvals are for conditions that are stable and found as a result of a medical review and not likely to worsen suddenly.

C2: Airmen permanently and TDY assignment-eligible to CONUS installations. They could also be deployable or assignable to overseas bases or non-fixed facilities if appropriate care is available. This is generally approved for temporary or mild conditions requiring follow-up but clinically inactive and managed without frequent visits or unique medication regimen or prescriptions.

C3: Airmen who are TDY non-deployable and assignment-limited to a specific installation based on medical need and availability of care. Approval authority is the Medical Standards Branch. The member’s commander may request waivers to send a member on deployment or permanent assignment in support of unit operations. "

Sperry1989
05-04-2012, 02:37 PM
I googled C1 for you and found the following article. http://www.af.mil/news/story.asp?id=123021302

The reference is a little dated but I think the codes are the same.

C1: Airmen permanently and TDY assignment-eligible to global Department of Defense installations with medical treatment facilities. Generally, approvals are for conditions that are stable and found as a result of a medical review and not likely to worsen suddenly.

Sperry1989
05-04-2012, 02:38 PM
Sorry Rip.....did not see your post before I hit the enter button.

Sperry1989
05-04-2012, 02:40 PM
Here is a link that provides a catalog of disabilities recognized by the VA.

http://ecfr.gpoaccess.gov/cgi/t/text/text-idx?c=ecfr&sid=d741c52f7d5b47cff93ecd0ec686fc0a&rgn=div5&view=text&node=38:1.0.1.1.5&idno=38#38:1.0.1.1.5.2.104.54

Rainmaker
05-04-2012, 02:46 PM
Hear, hear!!

Since Rainmaker thinks we're all full of shit, perhaps this will change his tune:

http://www.webmd.com/sleep-disorders/understanding-obstructive-sleep-apnea-syndrome

If WebMD is too egalitarian for you Rainmaker, just go over to the JAMA website and punch in sleep apnea.

Yeah, we're all just a bunch of fakers who want to empty your wallet.


I wouldn't believe everything you read. WebMD makes its money by selling advertisements to pharmaceutical Sponsors. The AMA supposedly a non-profit but, they accept tens of millions in advertising funds from drug companies. We are nation getting more and more addicted to prescription pills. I'm not going to post links. you guys can do your own research and draw your own conclusion. If you want to believe that your snoring is a chronic disease that's going to kill you. then, so be it.

Rainmaker
05-04-2012, 03:01 PM
A C1 assignment code is one of several assignment limitation codes big blue can slap on you for medical issues. From what my doc told me the majority of active duty sleep apnea cases in the AF are assigned C1.

A quick google search netted this article:
http://www.af.mil/news/story.asp?id=123021302

"
Under the Stratified Assignment Limitation Code C program, Airmen placed on Code C restriction now fall into one of three stratification levels:

C1: Airmen permanently and TDY assignment-eligible to global Department of Defense installations with medical treatment facilities. Generally, approvals are for conditions that are stable and found as a result of a medical review and not likely to worsen suddenly.

C2: Airmen permanently and TDY assignment-eligible to CONUS installations. They could also be deployable or assignable to overseas bases or non-fixed facilities if appropriate care is available. This is generally approved for temporary or mild conditions requiring follow-up but clinically inactive and managed without frequent visits or unique medication regimen or prescriptions.

C3: Airmen who are TDY non-deployable and assignment-limited to a specific installation based on medical need and availability of care. Approval authority is the Medical Standards Branch. The member’s commander may request waivers to send a member on deployment or permanent assignment in support of unit operations. "

All of these airman need to be med boarded the hell out of the military. if you have one of these codes for more than 6 months, then why should someone else have to pick up the slack?

Rainmaker
05-04-2012, 03:11 PM
I was tired all the time and nodding off at work (first duty station). I would go home for lunch every day and take a nap to get through the day, nap when I got home, spend time with my newborn, and go to bed at night. Of course doctors were telling me to stop napping so much - exercise more. So I did that. About a year into the assignment they had me hooked up to some heart monitor. Everytime I felt so tired that I would near fall over I was to hit a button. Negative results there. Finally a sleep study where the techs said "Worst case ever". Next thing I know I am using a CPAP. That didn't help, could never keep that thing on my face. Then they recommended a surgery to widen my nostrils. The recovery for that sucked (nose packed in spints and gauze for a month) but man, when they took that stuff out...I felt like I could run a marathon. Sadly, it's not a permanent solution, seeing as I am back to snoring and feeling tired again. I guess things grow back over time, but it got me through about 12 years.

One thing I hate about the sleep studies and the mask were mentioned above: sleep positions. Can't sleep on my side during a sleep study, and now with my current back injury I have to sleep on my side. One thing is for certain - never do that mask again. I'll do UPPP surgery before I even consider it. So uncomfortable for something you are to use "the rest of your life".

So, you have a new born baby and are tired all the time- Normal.
They prescribe you a CPAP- Which Doesn't work
So, they decide to Roto Rooter your nose- Helps for a little while but, ultimately Doesn't work
How much money would you estimate they have they spent on this?

Ripcord
05-04-2012, 04:58 PM
All of these airman need to be med boarded the hell out of the military. if you have one of these codes for more than 6 months, then why should someone else have to pick up the slack?

None of these codes prevent anyone from deploying. It's just an extra step to get them there. Even C3 can deploy though a waiver. Your argument is invalid.

Ripcord
05-04-2012, 05:14 PM
you guys can do your own research and draw your own conclusion. If you want to believe that your snoring is a chronic disease that's going to kill you. then, so be it.

I wonder if NFL great Reggie White believed his Sleep Apnea would kill him?

http://www.medpagetoday.com/PrimaryCare/SleepDisorders/298

...well if not that then I'm sure all the severe head trama he received over his career would have. I'm betting tramatic brain injury and concussions are just a farce in your world too?

Tak
05-04-2012, 05:24 PM
I plead guilty to misreading an earlier post of yours, Ripcord, but I think I've got this one. This is different from my experience. I'm starting to develop a little groove across the bridge of my nose created by the very top part of the mask (anyone got a cure?) but otherwise I have been able to accommodate the mask fairly well and the dog doesn't mind it, either.

Here in these forums and outside in real life, I'm getting conflicting information as to whether I should wear the mask all of the time or only some of the time. I'm suddenly discovering that many people around me have sleep apnea -- the friend at the dog park I've known for years, Grocery Lady, the lady at the dry cleaners', a family acquaintance -- but no one ever mentioned it.

Do the members of this forum really object to seeing something in print on this subject? If so, this is the time to shout out.

Questions:

1. Ripcord, what is a "C1 assignment code"?

2. Ripcord, what's MEPS?

3. Bunch, when you say, "They were trying to take it off the list but Congress put a stop to that in 2007," do you mean a list of disabilities? What government agency maintains this list? The same list quoted elsewhere in this thread?

4. Bruwin, if you "don't see why the taxpayers should pay people to sleep" -- such as your airman who "was always nodding off" -- what would you want the Air Force to do with that airman? Would you want the airman to be discharged and to receive 50% disability pay?

5. WPNS, what is DFAS?

6. Machine666, what's UPPP?

7. Tak, if a military member can receive 50% disability pay for sleep apnea requiring the mask, what pay, if any, can a couple receive when the military spouse has the diagnosis?

8. Tak, what's an AHI?

9. KellyinAvon, how often do you change the filter?

10. Drackore., why can't you lie on your side during a sleep study? When I had mine they told me they would prefer for me to lie on my back face up, but they didn't mind when I rolled over on my side.

11. Insidiousbookworm, what's a PHA?

A big thank-you to everyone who has been supportive while I try to understand this better.

1) not sure your question. My wife retired and gets it, if I retire I could get it. seperately
2) The apnea-hypopnea index (AHI) is an index of sleep apnea severity that combines apneas and hypopneas. The apneas (pauses in breathing) must last for at least 10 seconds and are associated with a decrease in blood oxygenation. Combining these gives an overall sleep apnea severity score that evaluates both number sleep disruptions and degree of oxygen desaturation (low blood level).

The AHI, as with the separate apnea index and hypopnea index, is calculated by dividing the number of events by the number of hours of sleep. (AHI values are typically categorized as 5-15/hr = Mild; 15-30/hr = Moderate; and > 30/h = Severe.)

insidiousbookworm
05-04-2012, 06:25 PM
Mr Dorr--a PHA is a routine annual medical "exam". I think it stands for "physical health assesment", but I could be wrong. It's really just a survey--"What is your overall impression of your health?"

They always ask if there is anything that you are concerned with, and for the past few years I had mentioned trouble sleeping. The response was always "You'll have to make an appointment with your provider to discuss that."

Last year, they added a requirement that you actually see a provider if you have an issue. So when I mentioned it the last time, they made me an appointment on the spot.

insidiousbookworm
05-04-2012, 06:30 PM
I wouldn't believe everything you read. WebMD makes its money by selling advertisements to pharmaceutical Sponsors. The AMA supposedly a non-profit but, they accept tens of millions in advertising funds from drug companies. We are nation getting more and more addicted to prescription pills. I'm not going to post links. you guys can do your own research and draw your own conclusion. If you want to believe that your snoring is a chronic disease that's going to kill you. then, so be it.

Snoring does not exactly equal sleep apnea--it's just a symptom. Sleep apnea can lead to high blood pressure, blindness, heart attack, stroke, and yes--death. Not to mention the possibility of falling asleep on the job or behind the wheel and killing yourself or someone else.

And since you distrust WebMD (you have a good point about being a for-profit), here's some info from the Mayo Clinic.
http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/sleep-apnea/DS00148

Rainmaker
05-04-2012, 06:46 PM
I wonder if NFL great Reggie White believed his Sleep Apnea would kill him?

http://www.medpagetoday.com/PrimaryCare/SleepDisorders/298

...well if not that then I'm sure all the severe head trama he received over his career would have. I'm betting tramatic brain injury and concussions are just a farce in your world too?

Reggie White died of heart attack. whether that was caused by sleep apnea or years of weighing in at over 300lbs is subject to debate. TBI and concussions that occur in Military Service can be pinpointed to specific events and are rightly compensated by the VA

Rainmaker
05-04-2012, 07:03 PM
None of these codes prevent anyone from deploying. It's just an extra step to get them there. Even C3 can deploy though a waiver. Your argument is invalid.

What makes it invalid? All of these codes can and do prevent airmen from deploying to many austere locations. Someone else who's not on a profile has to take their place. How is this equitable? There are too many people hanging around for 20+ years with restrictions on where they can or can't serve. My thinking is that the MEB system takes entirely too long. I empathize when an individual has a chronic condition thru no fault of their own. But, they should be quickly processed for discharge and compensated thru the VA system if necessary. The system as it is now rewards malingering. Unfortuantely, those who just suck it up and play with pain don't have the documented history to merit compensation

insidiousbookworm
05-04-2012, 07:06 PM
What makes it invalid? All of these codes can and do prevent airmen from deploying to many austere locations. Someone else who's not on a profile has to take their place. How is this equitable? There are too many people hanging around for 20+ years with restrictions on where they can or can't serve. My thinking is that the MEB system takes entirely too long. I empathize when an individual has a chronic condition thru no fault of their own. But, they should be quickly processed for discharge and compensated thru the VA system if necessary. The system as it is now rewards malingering. Unfortuantely, those who just suck it up and play with pain don't have the documented history to merit compensation

You've got a good point about the MEB process taking too long; however, in the case of sleep apnea, most of those are done via "fast-track" MEBs, which are usually resolved within a week. At least that was what the clinic told me when I went through mine.

Rainmaker
05-04-2012, 07:27 PM
You've got a good point about the MEB process taking too long; however, in the case of sleep apnea, most of those are done via "fast-track" MEBs, which are usually resolved within a week. At least that was what the clinic told me when I went through mine.

Wow!! something that causes high blood pressure, stroke, blindness, heart attack, death, suicide and even homocide can be resolved within a week. That is certainly breathtaking. I stand corrected and am fully on board with you now. I have done some serious learning on this board today!

insidiousbookworm
05-04-2012, 07:37 PM
Wow!! something that causes high blood pressure, stroke, blindness, heart attack, death, suicide and even homocide can be resolved within a week. That is certainly breathtaking. I stand corrected and am fully on board with you now. I have done some serious learning on this board today!

I'm sorry--I couldn't hear you. Would you mind repeating that?

Ripcord
05-04-2012, 08:40 PM
What makes it invalid? All of these codes can and do prevent airmen from deploying to many austere locations. Someone else who's not on a profile has to take their place. How is this equitable? There are too many people hanging around for 20+ years with restrictions on where they can or can't serve. My thinking is that the MEB system takes entirely too long. I empathize when an individual has a chronic condition thru no fault of their own. But, they should be quickly processed for discharge and compensated thru the VA system if necessary. The system as it is now rewards malingering. Unfortuantely, those who just suck it up and play with pain don't have the documented history to merit compensation

Because ALLOT of people not on profile don't go to those "austere" locations either. At least in the AF...which is the service we are talking about. also deployment actions related to profiles and MEB are supposed to be temporary in the first place anyway. if it permanent then those people should be sepearted/retired. That point is valid.

I could agree with your 6 months or your out theory on MEB's/profiles except for one glaring turd. The issue more often then not isn't the member it is the medical system and the MEB process itself. Most people I've come across on MEB or profile actually do WANT to and CAN get back to full duty or deploy. The process and the system prevents this.

FWIW I agree with the MEB comment. Mine took 7 months. Not because of my condition but because two weeks after I was diagnosed my doctor dropped his 2 week notice and was out. I didn't find out until I tried to PCA and a Chief said he wouldn't touch me until my code 37 was lifted. code 37? I didn't even know I had a code 37? Once we got it straightened out the actually fast track MEB only took like 3 weeks with me holding their hands every step of the way. I should have done that from the get go and that was my bad. So it's a crap system when the member is forced to push their own issues through the bureaucracy.

I will say this though. There is a special place in hell for people who do game the system to get out of deployments.

MACHINE666
05-04-2012, 09:10 PM
I wouldn't believe everything you read. WebMD makes its money by selling advertisements to pharmaceutical Sponsors. The AMA supposedly a non-profit but, they accept tens of millions in advertising funds from drug companies. We are nation getting more and more addicted to prescription pills. I'm not going to post links. you guys can do your own research and draw your own conclusion. If you want to believe that your snoring is a chronic disease that's going to kill you. then, so be it.

Dude - what village did you escape from?! They want their idiot, er you back.

When you can produce a medical degree from an accredited university, then I might take you seriously. Otherwise, buzz off.

MACHINE666
05-04-2012, 09:25 PM
I plead guilty to misreading an earlier post of yours, Ripcord, but I think I've got this one. This is different from my experience. I'm starting to develop a little groove across the bridge of my nose created by the very top part of the mask (anyone got a cure?) but otherwise I have been able to accommodate the mask fairly well and the dog doesn't mind it, either.

Here in these forums and outside in real life, I'm getting conflicting information as to whether I should wear the mask all of the time or only some of the time. I'm suddenly discovering that many people around me have sleep apnea -- the friend at the dog park I've known for years, Grocery Lady, the lady at the dry cleaners', a family acquaintance -- but no one ever mentioned it.

Do the members of this forum really object to seeing something in print on this subject? If so, this is the time to shout out.

Questions:

1. Ripcord, what is a "C1 assignment code"?

2. Ripcord, what's MEPS?

3. Bunch, when you say, "They were trying to take it off the list but Congress put a stop to that in 2007," do you mean a list of disabilities? What government agency maintains this list? The same list quoted elsewhere in this thread?

4. Bruwin, if you "don't see why the taxpayers should pay people to sleep" -- such as your airman who "was always nodding off" -- what would you want the Air Force to do with that airman? Would you want the airman to be discharged and to receive 50% disability pay?

5. WPNS, what is DFAS?

6. Machine666, what's UPPP?

7. Tak, if a military member can receive 50% disability pay for sleep apnea requiring the mask, what pay, if any, can a couple receive when the military spouse has the diagnosis?

8. Tak, what's an AHI?

9. KellyinAvon, how often do you change the filter?

10. Drackore., why can't you lie on your side during a sleep study? When I had mine they told me they would prefer for me to lie on my back face up, but they didn't mind when I rolled over on my side.

11. Insidiousbookworm, what's a PHA?

A big thank-you to everyone who has been supportive while I try to understand this better.

6. I dunno....what's UPPP with you?!?! Hardy har-har!!!!

:D :D :D :D :D

All joking aside, UPPP surgery is the abbreviation for Uvulopalatopharyngoplasty surgery. The surgeon goes in and removes your tonsils, adenoids, uvula (aka the punching bag in the back of your throat), any nasal polyps that may be obstructing your nasal passage, and cauterizes the whole mess once he's done. I had mine done in 2004, where I stayed as an inpatient at Camp Foster in Okinawa. After I was released, I was not allowed to fly for about a week, in the event there were any complications from the surgery, plus you really need time to heal. That thing knocked me flat on my ass, like Mike Tyson in the movie "The Hang-over". I was out and then some.

Shrike
05-04-2012, 09:30 PM
Rainmaker has made up her mind that sleep apnea is a big scam dreamed up by the nefarious and powerful ENT/Sleep Study/Mask Manufacturer Cabal. Nothing any of us say is going to convince her otherwise.

jarhead dad
05-04-2012, 10:38 PM
oh you will for sure. I think I've only ever slept completely through the night and woke up with my mask on twice in the 6 months I've had it. Both times I went to bed COMPLETELY exhausted. It take a few weeks to get used to but even now I usually wake up 2 or 3 AM and just take it off. According to the sleep geek I spoke of earlier successful CPAP use is considered as use from 4-6 hours per night 7 out of 10 days. If you are getting proper REM cycles you really only need to sleep for 4 hours typically.

Thanks a bunch. Last night was one of those up every other hour nights.

LC-45
05-05-2012, 01:04 PM
My problem is I had the sleep test, no sleep apnea, but severe sleep disturbance,
have been on CPAP every sense


I have found this thread very interesting. I had the sleep study done earlier this year and they are still screwing around with a diagnosis. Could be a sleep disturbance or mild Apnea. Slept 92% of the time, but very inefficient sleep. Woke 32 times, REM only 7 total minutes. O2 was 87% and H/R was 55 BPM. Had 3 Apnea episodes. They would like to repeat one more time to be sure.

Robert F. Dorr
05-05-2012, 03:00 PM
All joking aside, UPPP surgery is the abbreviation for Uvulopalatopharyngoplasty surgery. The surgeon goes in and removes your tonsils, adenoids, uvula (aka the punching bag in the back of your throat), any nasal polyps that may be obstructing your nasal passage, and cauterizes the whole mess once he's done.

That scares me more than the idea of being glued to a machine for life.

Like almost every little kid of my generation, I had my tonsils removed (in 1948). When it was learned that I'd been born with a hearing impairment that might prevent me from becoming a fighter pilot and getting into the first class in that new school they were building in Colorado, my parents dragged me to a succession of doctors who tried to make me hear better. One of them decided to remove my adenoids (in 1952). It didn't help, I still hear the same as the day I was born,

I didn't become a fighter pilot, I didn't go to the Academy. I did enlist in the Air Force and spent two tours in Korea listening to the bad guys on the radio, a job I was able to perform well and for which no hearing test was given. Now that I've been diagnosed with sleep apnea (in 2012), I can't solve the problem by removing tonsils and adenoids. As for my uvula, I guess I'm a little lax on my medical terminology but I thought that was something girls have. Anyway, I'm a little scared by all of this and I'm definitely down on UPPP.

Johca
05-05-2012, 07:23 PM
As for my uvula, I guess I'm a little lax on my medical terminology but I thought that was something girls have. And boys, men and women too whether they are fat or skinny, unless it has been surgically removed. Uvula is in the small tissue structure hanging from the palate above the root of the tongue.

You are confusing yourself with the Vulva, which is a portion of the female external genitalia.

Robert F. Dorr
05-05-2012, 07:27 PM
You are confusing yourself with the Vulva, which is a portion of the female external genitalia.

I threw that in for laughs. But I didn't know about it at all, so, thanks.

Tak
05-05-2012, 10:47 PM
I have found this thread very interesting. I had the sleep study done earlier this year and they are still screwing around with a diagnosis. Could be a sleep disturbance or mild Apnea. Slept 92% of the time, but very inefficient sleep. Woke 32 times, REM only 7 total minutes. O2 was 87% and H/R was 55 BPM. Had 3 Apnea episodes. They would like to repeat one more time to be sure.
My connection says va can rate disturbance as apnea if they deem it closest fit. Make sure you have cpap.

Robert F. Dorr
05-06-2012, 12:50 AM
Every time I try to throw a link into these forums I run into problems, so I won't. But I hope everyone saw the article in the Washington Post about the neighbor in Great Falls, Virginia, who is objecting to another neighbor building an elaborate $25 million mansion patterned after France's Palace of Versailles.

The ultra-wealthy builder of the mega-mansion is the owner of a chain of sleep medicine clinics in the Washington area, probably including the one that performed my sleep studies and is monitoring my sleep apnea situation.

The neighbor who is protesting took fat bonuses while his employees were being furloughed; he is the recently ousted boss at Gannett, which owns these forums.

The wealth of the sleep-clinic owner is one measure of how much money is out there in Medicare and other federally-financed health care systems.

And if you read the story about the mansion in today's Washington Post perhaps you also read my letter in the same paper.

Robert F. Dorr
05-09-2012, 11:12 AM
You are confusing yourself with the Vulva, which is a portion of the female external genitalia.

I have always been confused by those but I don't think I've ever confused myself with one. I have been called a c**t, but never a vulva. Or are you thinking of a car made in Sweden?

I'm new to this sleep apnea thing and puzzled by the fact that some mornings I wake up feeling rested while on other mornings I'm too fatigued to do anything. Could it be something as simple as the mask leaking on some nights and not on others?

Watch for comments on this from a newcomer's perspective in the newspaper.

Comm Chief
05-09-2012, 01:56 PM
Sleap apnea sucks. A few years ago I went to the Doc because I was completely run down. Figured I was just getting older and my T was running low. I was a zombie by mid day, unfocused at work and fairly dangerous driving home from work. At the time I thought sleep apnea was just a scam for fat folks. Doc said I did not fit the profile for apnea but sent me for a sleep study since my blood work was good. Learned my sleep rate was under 70%. The reason its a legit claim is it can/will kill you. VA rate is dependent on the severity. Could be 0, 30 or 50%. Personally, I'd rather be healthy.

Robert F. Dorr
05-09-2012, 05:45 PM
Sleep apnea sucks.

A lot of the time it seems to me to be mostly an annoyance. But I don't understand why I feel rested on some days and fatigued on others. Could it be some inconsistency in my use of the mask? Like Comm Chief, I have good blood work but my sleep study shows moderate sleep apnea. I don't think I ever reached the point of falling asleep involuntarily.

What about the inconsistency, folks?

Shrike
05-09-2012, 06:04 PM
A lot of the time it seems to me to be mostly an annoyance. But I don't understand why I feel rested on some days and fatigued on others. Could it be some inconsistency in my use of the mask? Like Comm Chief, I have good blood work but my sleep study shows moderate sleep apnea. I don't think I ever reached the point of falling asleep involuntarily.

What about the inconsistency, folks?
You're probably better off asking your doctor about that.

Robert F. Dorr
05-11-2012, 12:56 AM
You're probably better off asking your doctor about that.

You think?

I have two doctors involved in this:

-- my general practitioner (a dying breed in America), who coincidentally happens to be a former flight surgeon, but who has no specialized experience in sleep medicine. He is my supporter here. He is on my side.

-- the sleep doctor, whose motives I can only guess but who apparently gains nothing if his diagnosis reveals that I don't need him. Is he my supporter? Is he on my side? I don't know.

I asked what I thought was a fairly simple question about sleep apnea, or at least it would be familiar to those who've been on this route longer than I have. Is it reasonable for mornings to be inconsistent? Is it reasonable to feel rested on some mornings but fatigued on others?

Now that Shrike suggested it -- gee, it never occurred to me -- I will ask both doctors when I can gain access to them. Meanwhile, what is your experience?

Drackore
05-11-2012, 07:28 AM
So, you have a new born baby and are tired all the time- Normal.
They prescribe you a CPAP- Which Doesn't work
So, they decide to Roto Rooter your nose- Helps for a little while but, ultimately Doesn't work
How much money would you estimate they have they spent on this?

Ahh the tool of a troll wants me to bait. I'll go for it. Why should I estimate it? I saw three doctors and a surgeon because of that incident. Since I am not of a medical background, when four medical practitioners/experts/whatever you want to call them say "you need this treatment" - I saw little reason to disagree. If a Commander and a Chief say "you need to go to location X", are you going to say "No, I estimate it will cost the taxpayers too much money"?

Go f*** yourself, boy.

Drackore
05-11-2012, 07:32 AM
10. Drackore., why can't you lie on your side during a sleep study? When I had mine they told me they would prefer for me to lie on my back face up, but they didn't mind when I rolled over on my side.



Sorry I've avoided this topic a bit, so I didn't see this til just now. For the two sleep studies I've had...I had so many sensors and wires hood up to me that rolling over just wasn't an option. Don't know if the process has changed any, but I felt like a human in the Matrix, only with 100 more wires and sensors.

Robert F. Dorr
05-11-2012, 07:46 AM
Go f*** yourself, boy.

Could this mean you're not getting him anything for Christmas?

Drackore
05-11-2012, 08:45 AM
Could this mean you're not getting him anything for Christmas?

I still would...especially if he were Jewish or Athiest. Bonus points if he's an outspoken Athiest. A card with Merry CHRISTmas in great big letters. :D

Robert F. Dorr
05-11-2012, 09:51 AM
I still would...especially if he were Jewish or Athiest. Bonus points if he's an outspoken Athiest. A card with Merry CHRISTmas in great big letters. :D

I didn't mean Gary North. I meant Drackore.

TJMAC77SP
05-11-2012, 10:30 AM
You think?

I have two doctors involved in this:

-- my general practitioner (a dying breed in America), who coincidentally happens to be a former flight surgeon, but who has no specialized experience in sleep medicine. He is my supporter here. He is on my side.

-- the sleep doctor, whose motives I can only guess but who apparently gains nothing if his diagnosis reveals that I don't need him. Is he my supporter? Is he on my side? I don't know.

I asked what I thought was a fairly simple question about sleep apnea, or at least it would be familiar to those who've been on this route longer than I have. Is it reasonable for mornings to be inconsistent? Is it reasonable to feel rested on some mornings but fatigued on others?

Now that Shrike suggested it -- gee, it never occurred to me -- I will ask both doctors when I can gain access to them. Meanwhile, what is your experience?

Ok, but what about this (http://www.militarytimes.com/forum/showthread.php?1591808-Robert-F-Dorr-column-topics-ONLY!&p=530800#post530800) ?

Shrike
05-11-2012, 10:56 AM
You think?

I have two doctors involved in this:

-- my general practitioner (a dying breed in America), who coincidentally happens to be a former flight surgeon, but who has no specialized experience in sleep medicine. He is my supporter here. He is on my side.

-- the sleep doctor, whose motives I can only guess but who apparently gains nothing if his diagnosis reveals that I don't need him. Is he my supporter? Is he on my side? I don't know.

I asked what I thought was a fairly simple question about sleep apnea, or at least it would be familiar to those who've been on this route longer than I have. Is it reasonable for mornings to be inconsistent? Is it reasonable to feel rested on some mornings but fatigued on others?

Now that Shrike suggested it -- gee, it never occurred to me -- I will ask both doctors when I can gain access to them. Meanwhile, what is your experience?

Geez, not have your Ensure yet? If you want to get all cranky, here's my response-in-kind: my experience is that asking medical questions on the internet when you have a very, very small sample group is about as f**king dumb as can be. There's your answer. Happy now, BobDorr?

Robert F. Dorr
05-11-2012, 11:04 AM
Geez, not have your Ensure yet? If you want to get all cranky, here's my response-in-kind: my experience is that asking medical questions on the internet when you have a very, very small sample group is about as f**king dumb as can be. There's your answer. Happy now, BobDorr?

Shrike, you don't need to go easy on me. Try to get over your shyness and just come out with it.

I was looking to compare notes with others here who've had similar experience -- but for a longer time than I -- and who might have some idea whether I'm making progress.

I can't imagine what makes you think I'd get cranky. What do you mean, get? I've accrued many years of solid, top-notch experience being cranky and am fully qualified for a graduate degree in cranky. Get? I don't need to get. I got.

I'm not losing hope that someone who is less bashful will answer my question about consistency in how you feel when you wake up in the morning. No, not you. You.

insidiousbookworm
05-11-2012, 03:05 PM
A lot of the time it seems to me to be mostly an annoyance. But I don't understand why I feel rested on some days and fatigued on others. Could it be some inconsistency in my use of the mask? Like Comm Chief, I have good blood work but my sleep study shows moderate sleep apnea. I don't think I ever reached the point of falling asleep involuntarily.

What about the inconsistency, folks?

I have the same thing. I don't have a CPAP--I just have a hard mouth guard. Most days, I still feel tired, but I feel like the sleep that I did get was better. I still wake up a lot, but I think that it's mostly due to still getting used to wearing the mouthguard. Oh, and drooling. I drool like a fiend now. I've read that that tends to stop once you've become more adjusted to wearing the thing, but for now, it tends to wake me up quite often. Hopefully I'll get fully acclimated to the mouthguard and start really sleeping. It works to control the apnea episodes, as proven in a recent sleep study, but it doesn't help me sleep!

Robert F. Dorr
05-12-2012, 12:32 AM
I have the same thing. I don't have a CPAP--I just have a hard mouth guard. Most days, I still feel tired, but I feel like the sleep that I did get was better. I still wake up a lot, but I think that it's mostly due to still getting used to wearing the mouthguard. Oh, and drooling. I drool like a fiend now. I've read that that tends to stop once you've become more adjusted to wearing the thing, but for now, it tends to wake me up quite often. Hopefully I'll get fully acclimated to the mouthguard and start really sleeping. It works to control the apnea episodes, as proven in a recent sleep study, but it doesn't help me sleep!

Thank you, insidiousbookworm, and thanks to all who made helpful comments. The May 21 issue of Air Force Times, published on May 14, is scheduled to run an opinion column from me about sleep apnea in the Air Force. I was doing just fine without having it in my own life. My experience hasn't been quite as unpleasant as that of some others but whoever said it sucks had it right.

Robert F. Dorr
05-15-2012, 01:05 AM
Many nights my wife and I sleep at opposite ends of the house. When I was at the clinic preparing to come in for the sleep study to determine my sleep apnea situation we had this conversation:

Him: "We want you to come in at eight o'clock in the evening and do everything exactly the same way you do it at home. Prepare to sleep exactly the same way. Sleep exactly the same way."

Me: "The same way? Exactly? You mean exactly?"

Him: "Yes. We want to duplicate your sleeping experience at home."

Me: "Gee, that sounds terrific. Tell me again what time you want me and the dog to show up."

Him: "Dog?"

Me: "Dog."

Him: "This is a medical facility! You can't have no stinkin' dog in here!"

Me: "Then it won't be exactly the same."

So far my Labrador retriever Autumn hasn't objected to the mask and hasn't chewed on the tube. It may be just because I'm new to this, but using the machine doesn't seem like more than a minor annoyance to me. By the way, Autumn snores. She may have dog sleep apnea.

Robert F. Dorr
05-15-2012, 03:16 AM
All my dogs snore, doesn't seem to bother them at all. For myself, I sleep worse with no dog nearby snoring. Most days I wake up with 2 or 3 on the bed. Sometimes 4 or 5.

You gotta love 'em. They are perfect creatures. They are the only evidence of intelligent design. You gotta wonder about all of the unfortunates who don't appreciate them. Autumn sometimes sleeps with all four feet sticking straight up in the air. If I could, I would have four or five.

imnohero
05-15-2012, 03:28 AM
You gotta love 'em. They are perfect creatures. They are the only evidence of intelligent design. You gotta wonder about all of the unfortunates who don't appreciate them. Autumn sometimes sleeps with all four feet sticking straight up in the air. If I could, I would have four or five.

If you could? What's stopping you? LOL. We have 7, admittedly too many. Not to derail the thread, but 7 is apparently the number we are destined to have. Every time we lose one, there's always one around to fill the empty spot.

2 years ago, when one of our basset hounds passed, in the span of 3 weeks we found 2 litters of pups, 3 "singles" and finally ended up keeping a cocker spaniel. Then no more dogs showed up. Then a year ago, our German Shepherd passed, and a few weeks later, a family friend lost his job (house, car, and basically everything) and needed a place for his dog "for a couple weeks." We still have the big lug (a lab retriever).

They are work and cost a lot of money but they are such a joy, I can't imagine being without them.

Robert F. Dorr
05-15-2012, 11:16 AM
I wonder if this would work as a new thread. Let's find out.

Robert F. Dorr
11-08-2012, 07:33 PM
Today (November 8) spent an hour with a new and different sleep medicine doctor and learned more than the entire rest of the time since first learning of this affliction last March. The experience proved something we all know but don't always pay attention to: If you're getting help from someone you're not comfortable with, go to someone else. If anybody is still interested in sleep apnea, I've learned a lot more about it.

HollomanMSgt
11-08-2012, 07:55 PM
Ok question for you guys. I am over 20 fixing to hit almost 24 years in. Approved retirement date for Aug next year. Which means about 8 months left till i am done. I have been putting off my sleep study as i dont want the Air Force trying to screw me out of my retirement. Ok on to the question, If i am diagnosed with sleep apnea and i only have 8 months to my approved retirement date would they put it on hold to do an MEB or would they just say screw it and not do an MEb because i am that close.

Measure Man
11-08-2012, 08:13 PM
Ok question for you guys. I am over 20 fixing to hit almost 24 years in. Approved retirement date for Aug next year. Which means about 8 months left till i am done. I have been putting off my sleep study as i dont want the Air Force trying to screw me out of my retirement. Ok on to the question, If i am diagnosed with sleep apnea and i only have 8 months to my approved retirement date would they put it on hold to do an MEB or would they just say screw it and not do an MEb because i am that close.

MEBs can not be predicted.

Do your sleep study...people die from apnea!

Rainmaker
11-08-2012, 08:24 PM
Today (November 8) spent an hour with a new and different sleep medicine doctor and learned more than the entire rest of the time since first learning of this affliction last March. The experience proved something we all know but don't always pay attention to: If you're getting help from someone you're not comfortable with, go to someone else. If anybody is still interested in sleep apnea, I've learned a lot more about it.

The only thing anyone really knows for sure about this "affliction" is that its worth 50% in tax free money from the VA.

Mcjohn1118
11-08-2012, 08:57 PM
I just went through one with 12 month left. There are basically four different findings. No apnea so you get nothing. Mild, Moderate and "Holy sh&^, I can't believe you're still alive. Anyway, for moderate and extreme (at our base anyway) you are issued a CPAP machine to test for 30-days. Once issued the machine, you are automatically coded MEB. But this may be a benefit. Even if you are scheduled to retire, you may be medically retired under MEB at a higher percentage. Now this is different than your VA rating. For VA ratings, all that is will say in your records, again, here in the OH region, is "CPAP issued" and that is a 50 percent rating by VA. I hope this helps.

AF Chief
11-08-2012, 09:51 PM
I know this is hard to believe, but I cannot remember sleeping an entire night since 1991. Typically I wake up 4-6 times a night. Several years ago I had a sleep study done. Even though I woke up 14 times and stopped breaking twice, they said I didn't have Sleep Apnia. They did diagnose me with a "Sleeping Disorder" and Restless Leg Syndrome (RLS). I started seeing a doctor again for the sleeping issues. They sent me a home with a little machine attached to my finger, but said they didn't see anything unusual. I have been on 3 different types of sleeping meds that absolutely don't work (Lunesta, Ambien, and another I can't remember the name of). My sleeping issues have definitely gotten worse over the years. Since I am not diagnosed with sleep apnia, I guess I will just settle for a "sleeping disorder and RLS" which is not considered a disability item. I have considered asking them to do another sleep study or let me try a CPAP and see if it works. Don't know if they will consider this.

Part of my problem is my back. I am currently being considered for a med-board for my back--awaiting AFPC's decision. I have 20+ years of documented back problems. I have done Physical Therapy, on pain meds (percoset) some times, and get the cortisone back shots every 3 months. I don't even have a clue what kind of disability rating this will be. I have degenerative disk disease in my lower 3 disks and arthritis as well. I have 28.5 years in, "Code C" in the deployment world. I am waiting to see if they will either separate me or let me ride my time to 30 years--I am good with either.

Drackore
11-09-2012, 09:46 AM
Damn Chief - you sound like me. I hope I can get to that point as well...I'm at 15 and feel like I am fighting and clawing the system to avoid the MEB and get to 20.


I know this is hard to believe, but I cannot remember sleeping an entire night since 1991. Typically I wake up 4-6 times a night. Several years ago I had a sleep study done. Even though I woke up 14 times and stopped breaking twice, they said I didn't have Sleep Apnia. They did diagnose me with a "Sleeping Disorder" and Restless Leg Syndrome (RLS). I started seeing a doctor again for the sleeping issues. They sent me a home with a little machine attached to my finger, but said they didn't see anything unusual. I have been on 3 different types of sleeping meds that absolutely don't work (Lunesta, Ambien, and another I can't remember the name of). My sleeping issues have definitely gotten worse over the years. Since I am not diagnosed with sleep apnia, I guess I will just settle for a "sleeping disorder and RLS" which is not considered a disability item. I have considered asking them to do another sleep study or let me try a CPAP and see if it works. Don't know if they will consider this.

Part of my problem is my back. I am currently being considered for a med-board for my back--awaiting AFPC's decision. I have 20+ years of documented back problems. I have done Physical Therapy, on pain meds (percoset) some times, and get the cortisone back shots every 3 months. I don't even have a clue what kind of disability rating this will be. I have degenerative disk disease in my lower 3 disks and arthritis as well. I have 28.5 years in, "Code C" in the deployment world. I am waiting to see if they will either separate me or let me ride my time to 30 years--I am good with either.

insidiousbookworm
11-09-2012, 11:26 AM
If you receive a medical diagnosis of sleep apnea, that's an automatic MEB. The only exception to that is if you don't actually need a CPAP; however, in order to avoid the MEB, you've got to get your sleep study folks to specify on their report that your sleep apnea can be adequately controlled without using a CPAP. And by the time you get to that point, you're probably going to be into the MEB process. I went through the whole MEB, only to find out that I didn't have to have one, since I don't need a CPAP, just a mouth guard.

Here's my whole timeline:
1. Saw PCM for sleeping troubles, got sleep study appointment
2. Went to sleep study, got called back for another--this time with a CPAP
3. Saw PCM, formally diagnosed--report stated "could be controlled with hard mouth guard"
4. MEB started--supposed to be "fast track", but got held up
5. Got appointment at dental for mouth guard
6. Back for another sleep study using mouth guard
7. Sleep apnea controlled, sent results in to MEB
8. Notified that I didn't need an MEB, since I didn't need a CPAP--returned to full duty status

From what I've read, if you don't need a CPAP, you get no disability. I'm OK with that; there's no way I could sleep with one of those snorkels on my face.

Rainmaker
11-09-2012, 01:45 PM
If you receive a medical diagnosis of sleep apnea, that's an automatic MEB. The only exception to that is if you don't actually need a CPAP; however, in order to avoid the MEB, you've got to get your sleep study folks to specify on their report that your sleep apnea can be adequately controlled without using a CPAP. And by the time you get to that point, you're probably going to be into the MEB process. I went through the whole MEB, only to find out that I didn't have to have one, since I don't need a CPAP, just a mouth guard.

Here's my whole timeline:
1. Saw PCM for sleeping troubles, got sleep study appointment
2. Went to sleep study, got called back for another--this time with a CPAP
3. Saw PCM, formally diagnosed--report stated "could be controlled with hard mouth guard"
4. MEB started--supposed to be "fast track", but got held up
5. Got appointment at dental for mouth guard
6. Back for another sleep study using mouth guard
7. Sleep apnea controlled, sent results in to MEB
8. Notified that I didn't need an MEB, since I didn't need a CPAP--returned to full duty status

From what I've read, if you don't need a CPAP, you get no disability. I'm OK with that; there's no way I could sleep with one of those snorkels on my face.

You could've saved yourself, fellow airmen and the taxpayers all the time, trouble and money spent non-diagnosing you just by buying one of those $10 stop snoring mouth guards from the infomercial

MaintChief
11-09-2012, 10:47 PM
You could've saved yourself, fellow airmen and the taxpayers all the time, trouble and money spent non-diagnosing you just by buying one of those $10 stop snoring mouth guards from the infomercial

Your ignorance is breathtaking. Sleep apnea is a real condition, and if severe enough and untreated, can kill. I was falling asleep at staff meetings and nodding off at red lights. When I slept at night I never "slept" and entered REM sleep. My body was constantly fighting for air...my blood oxygenation levels were under 75%. I never had a proper, restful sleep. My last year I had the sleep study done. I had to go on a CPAP machine. Yes, I was MEB'd, but already had retirement papers in.

People, research the MEB process. If you already have a hard retirement date, the MEB will NOT affect you negatively.

And if you are getting ready to retire...CLAIM EVERYTHING on your VA physical/paperwork. Yes, you may be "ok" now, but you do not know how your body will be 10-15 years down the line.

lowdog5
08-05-2013, 05:21 AM
Just reading a few threads on here and wanted to chime in, I was diagnosed with Cronic-Sleep Apnea in 2006, 5 years after I retired from the Navy (2001). I was diagnosed in 1988 as having it but nothing was done by any medical staff I went to, even during a over-seas screening. After 2 years on a CPAP machine I finally got up enough strength to submit a claim to the VA in September 2008 (2 years later) and faught and faught rejection letters for 4 years. After I got a lawyer and a doctor to physically speak with a rep from the VA with a hand written letter from my doctor stating that this condition was evident while I was on active duty. My claim got approved for 50% which jacked up my percentage to a total of 60%. I'm receiving two checks, one retirement and one Disability. I also received a RETRO payment from DFAS that adjusted my retirement pay where it should have been, I'm currently awaiting my RETRO-CRDP payment from VA for the time period of Sep2008-Sep2012. If you feel you have a ligimite claim then be pro-active and fight what is rightfully yours. I'm proof that it does work but it does take a very LONG TIME to see results. That is what discourages folks from not doing anything a all....they feel that its a never ending task that no light is seen at the end of the tunnel.

F15ECC
08-05-2013, 11:55 AM
Im new to writing on the forums been a reader for years...

Has anyone had to deal with an MEB for lower extremity Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy (RSD/CRPS)? Thanks!

DocBones
08-05-2013, 02:48 PM
Maintchief,

If you are still having trouble staying awake, ask your Dr for Nuvigil. That is a non amphetamine drug that really makes your days much more enjoyable and awake.

ConfusedAirman
08-05-2013, 10:26 PM
Sleep apnea is a real condition but there is no friggin excuse for the taxpayers to be automatically saddled with paying disability at 50%. VA benefit eligibility needs to be reined in to cover conditions that time in the service CAUSED - not just things that came up while in the service. Another reason that VA should not automatically cover sleep apnea is that the majority of cases can be treated (I didn't say cured) in a way where it is an annoyance at night but almost never affects a person's ability to earn a living - which to me would be a defining characteristic of the term "disability". Next thing you know veterans with sleep apnea will be demanding handicapped parking privileges. I have no problem with retired medical benefits continuing to treat sleep apnea but 50% disability payments for this condition for most affected is no different than handing cash to a drug-addled whore pumping out babies for the welfare checks.

efmbman
08-05-2013, 11:09 PM
Another reason that VA should not automatically cover sleep apnea is that the majority of cases can be treated (I didn't say cured) in a way where it is an annoyance at night but almost never affects a person's ability to earn a living - which to me would be a defining characteristic of the term "disability".

That is the key right there. As it is now, the C&P exam is based solely on quality of life now as compared to when service began. The evaluation is very subjective and if one knows how to answer the questions properly he/she can be fully functioning but qualify at 100%. Trust me... I see it everyday.

garhkal
08-06-2013, 05:02 AM
Sleep apnea is a real condition but there is no friggin excuse for the taxpayers to be automatically saddled with paying disability at 50%. VA benefit eligibility needs to be reined in to cover conditions that time in the service CAUSED - not just things that came up while in the service. Another reason that VA should not automatically cover sleep apnea is that the majority of cases can be treated (I didn't say cured) in a way where it is an annoyance at night but almost never affects a person's ability to earn a living - which to me would be a defining characteristic of the term "disability". Next thing you know veterans with sleep apnea will be demanding handicapped parking privileges. I have no problem with retired medical benefits continuing to treat sleep apnea but 50% disability payments for this condition for most affected is no different than handing cash to a drug-addled whore pumping out babies for the welfare checks.

Well said. I have known some who were 'proud; to be milking the system for 75%+ disability but were still working. Im sorry if people hate me for saying it, but if you are that damn disabled, you should NOT be working.


That is the key right there. As it is now, the C&P exam is based solely on quality of life now as compared to when service began. The evaluation is very subjective and if one knows how to answer the questions properly he/she can be fully functioning but qualify at 100%. Trust me... I see it everyday.

Which is why we say it needs to be reformed.

cloudFFVII
08-06-2013, 12:51 PM
Wow...as someone who has severe Sleep Apnea, I can say that unless you live with this condition everyday, you have no idea how crippling it can be.

For starters, you can DIE. As in, lack of oxygen leads to a heart attack/stroke, which leads to death.

And even WITH CPAP therapy, there are plenty of days I wake up groggy, but I push through it. Without the CPAP, I literally had to be sent home from work at one point because I couldn't keep my eyes open, because I never entered into the deep stages of sleep where you actually recover. This is from someone who is in bed (usually) at 10PM every night. I don't think of too many people that do that.

It used to be 50% was the standard for the Sleep Apnea and you didn't have to do anything (i.e. just be diagnosed/get the machine, but you didn't actually have to USE it once you retired). So of course that's just a recipe for people to get it through less than honest means and cash a $1000 check every month. THAT I completely understand how people can get up in arms over, it was wrong, and people were defrauding the government, and hopefully went to jail.

However, the current standard is you must visit the VA, BRING your CPAP (or at the very least, the memory stick in it), and you have to use it 90% of the time (so, for 365 days, that's approximately 328 days). Otherwise, you LOSE that benefit, so there is no more "scamming" under the CPAP umbrella. And you can't just hit the "start" button and leave it on...the mapping data is very precise and they can tell when you have a "good" seal or when it's "leaking". They aren't buying it if your entire time showed it was "leaking". Again, if you don't have a CPAP and went through these tests, what I'm saying is probably greek :)

I would just caution people to not judge whether something should be called a disability or not, when you are not living with the condition. I had a cardiomyopathy for 12 years, outside you had no idea anything was wrong, inside, combined with the undiagnosed S/A, it was waging havoc on my life. Thank goodness my heart condition has resolved and I can now do all portions of the PT test...which I passed for the first time with all components last week and now I'm gunning after that 90%, 2 of those and I can retire :)

FatCat40
08-06-2013, 01:03 PM
I also was diagnosed w/sleep apnea. Never even heard of it until the diagnosis. I never understood why no matter how early I went to bed or how much sleep I got I ALWAYS awoke the next morning feeling as though I never even went to bed the night prior. There wasn't a single morning in the 21 yrs I was in the Army that I awoke that my very first thought wasn't "I can't wait till the end of the day so I can come home and go back to bed". That was on GOOD mornings. There were several mornings I'd awake and honestly wish to be dead just so I could sleep forever......

efmbman
08-06-2013, 01:37 PM
Wow...as someone who has severe Sleep Apnea, I can say that unless you live with this condition everyday, you have no idea how crippling it can be.

For starters, you can DIE. As in, lack of oxygen leads to a heart attack/stroke, which leads to death.

And even WITH CPAP therapy, there are plenty of days I wake up groggy, but I push through it. Without the CPAP, I literally had to be sent home from work at one point because I couldn't keep my eyes open, because I never entered into the deep stages of sleep where you actually recover. This is from someone who is in bed (usually) at 10PM every night. I don't think of too many people that do that.

It used to be 50% was the standard for the Sleep Apnea and you didn't have to do anything (i.e. just be diagnosed/get the machine, but you didn't actually have to USE it once you retired). So of course that's just a recipe for people to get it through less than honest means and cash a $1000 check every month. THAT I completely understand how people can get up in arms over, it was wrong, and people were defrauding the government, and hopefully went to jail.

However, the current standard is you must visit the VA, BRING your CPAP (or at the very least, the memory stick in it), and you have to use it 90% of the time (so, for 365 days, that's approximately 328 days). Otherwise, you LOSE that benefit, so there is no more "scamming" under the CPAP umbrella. And you can't just hit the "start" button and leave it on...the mapping data is very precise and they can tell when you have a "good" seal or when it's "leaking". They aren't buying it if your entire time showed it was "leaking". Again, if you don't have a CPAP and went through these tests, what I'm saying is probably greek :)

I would just caution people to not judge whether something should be called a disability or not, when you are not living with the condition. I had a cardiomyopathy for 12 years, outside you had no idea anything was wrong, inside, combined with the undiagnosed S/A, it was waging havoc on my life. Thank goodness my heart condition has resolved and I can now do all portions of the PT test...which I passed for the first time with all components last week and now I'm gunning after that 90%, 2 of those and I can retire :)

I don't think anyone is saying the diagnosis or the benefit should be universally withdrawn. The problem is that the diagnosis and the benefit is universally applied which means there are Veterans receiving the benefit that should not. This is a drain on system resources that could end up being unsustainable. The VA (VHA and VBA) are exempt from sequestration this FY. That will not always be the case. As the military draws down thousands of eligible Veterans are instantly created. The medical costs are not eliminated but only transfered from one agency to another. The DOD can somewhat predict healthcare costs because everyone eventually leaves the service. The VA is obligated until the Veteran dies.

Sergeant eNYgma
08-06-2013, 06:38 PM
I have this I just got the study done and everything. I've been using the C PAP but havent noticed a HUGE difference really....about how long does it take to notice? I've been using it since early July.

Absinthe Anecdote
08-06-2013, 06:51 PM
I'm sad to hear those CPAP machines have memory sticks and that they check them.

I am considering becoming a benefit milker and sleep apnea was one of my target disabilities. I'm also considering post service depression related to a failure to adapt to civilian life.

That CPAP memory stick stuff is really putting a damper on my plans.

I'm so sad and blue. :-(

Ripcord
08-06-2013, 07:36 PM
I have this I just got the study done and everything. I've been using the C PAP but havent noticed a HUGE difference really....about how long does it take to notice? I've been using it since early July.

Should be right away. Everybody's symptoms are different. Mine was found because I had elevated blood pressure. After a sleep study I got diagnosed with a minor case of sleep apnea and put on a CPAP. Very rarely do i sleep with it on the whole night (usually rip it off for comfort if I wake up) but those nights I do sleep through it I feel much more rested and ready to go.

Sergeant eNYgma
08-06-2013, 08:06 PM
Should be right away. Everybody's symptoms are different. Mine was found because I had elevated blood pressure. After a sleep study I got diagnosed with a minor case of sleep apnea and put on a CPAP. Very rarely do i sleep with it on the whole night (usually rip it off for comfort if I wake up) but those nights I do sleep through it I feel much more rested and ready to go.

I have been using it a month and see no real difference...so dunno. I'll be talking to my doc to look at data and stuff though maybe he'll shed omse light on it.