The CPAP machine is made to push air through the partially blocked airway to clear the obstruction and allow breathing to continue normally. Many people describe “regular” CPAP machines do this by blowing air at a constant rate all night long regardless of whether you’re experiencing an apnea or a cessation of breathing or otherwise.
An automatic CPAP machine does not use a constant pressure. Instead, it is designed to detect the quality of your breath by means of a device that provides feedback on pressure. When the machine is able to tell that you’re breathing normally then the pressure you are delivered will be less. However it will sense that you’re not breathing well and, for instance, it detects an apnea hypopnea, or snoring pressure that is delivered will be greater.
Because the majority of patients with sleep apnea can breathe normally for at minimum a period of their sleep so it is obvious that the constant pressure is ineffective for CPAP therapy. Automated CPAP machines provide approximately 40percent less pressure over the duration of the night than to a CPAP machine, which provides a constant pressure. The lower pressure can improve patient comfort and reduce compliance, and makes CPAP therapy more palatable for those who are new CPAP users.
If your pressure prescription is quite low, i.e. less than 10 cm H2O, the principal benefit of using an automatic CPAP machine isn’t the lower average pressure, but rather that you do not have to be concerned about adjusting your pressure setting anytime soon. A computerized CPAP machine practically guarantees that you’ll get the most effective CPAP treatment, regardless of any changes to your medical condition.
Like most CPAP machines, automated CPAP machines are built to supply air pressure that is between 4 cm H2O to 20cm H2O. When the machine is initially set up, the machine, the max and minimum pressures are to be determined. Most often, the default setting of 4 cm H2O for the minimum pressure, and 20 cm H2O as the highest pressure is utilized. If your recommended pressure setting is more than 10 cm H2O, then increasing the minimum pressure may be a good idea. I’d suggest using the standard setting for maximum and minimum pressures because these settings allow for the greatest reduction in average pressure and provide the greatest quality of patient comfort.
Another advantage of automated CPAP machine is they’re actually two machines within one. There’s the CPAP machine that regulates pressure automatically, but you can also purchase a machine that can be configured to give an unchanging pressure, just like the regular CPAP machine. This versatility in function is attractive to a large number of CPAP users, and especially those who are making use of CPAP apparatus for the first time.
There are two kinds of sleep apnea: central and obstructional. Central sleep apnea is the result of a malfunction in the thalamus region of the brain. In contrast, sleep apnea that is obstructive results from an obstruction to the airway. CPAP machines are specifically designed to allow airflow for those suffering with obstructive sleep apnea however CPAP machines have no influence on the Central sleep apnea. Certain automatic CPAP devices, such as Puritan Bennett 420E. Puritan Bennett 420E can identify the occurrence of apneas with and without cardiac osciallations, thereby avoiding intensifying the pressure during central apnea episodes when there is an open airway. In addition, the most advanced automated CPAP machines are able to distinguish between obstructive hypopnea and central hypopnea (which is defined as breathing shallowly).
Here is a brief summary of the advantages of an automated CPAP machine:
Around 40% reduction overall in pressure delivered
There is no need to stress about changing the pressure when your situation alters
Flexible – the machine may be set to auto mode or continuous mode
Certain automated machines can detect the distinction between obstructive apneas/hypop and central apneas and hypopneas.