How it works
The most common and noninvasive treatment for obstructive sleep apnea is a nasal Continuous Positive Airway Pressure (CPAP) machine.
A flexible tube connects to the CPAP machine with a mask or other interface device that is worn over the nose and/or mouth.
CPAP is pressurized room air that maintains an open airway during sleep. The optimal pressure is determined during the overnight sleep study with a CPAP titration.
Because CPAP is a medical device, patient’s must have a physician’s prescription in order to obtain a CPAP and supplies.
The majority of CPAP machines can monitor compliance on a nightly basis. This indicates how often a patient uses the nasal CPAP machine on a nightly basis.
The sleep center physician may want to download this data periodically and during follow-up visits. This can also be an important feature if the patient or the physician needs objective verification that sufficient amounts of sleep are being obtained while using the treatment.
CPAP machines are generally rented or purchased through a home health care company in the patient’s area. Typically CPAP devices are covered by insurance as a durable medical equipment benefit.
Our dedicated sleep center staff will inform patients of who their contacted home health care provider will be, based on the current insurance. Arrangements will then be made after treatment has been ordered by a physician. A referral will be faxed to a home health care provider, who will then contact the patient for the initial setup.
At that time, the home health care company will discuss billing and co-pays, if any exist, and will set up a time to come to the patient’s home or workplace to go over the instruction of nasal CPAP and its use.
After treatment is initiated, a follow up is recommended in the office generally one to three months after therapy. This is based on the discretion of the ordering physician. If medical problems or questions arise prior to the follow up visit, please contact the Sleep Medicine Center directly.
As an additional benefit to our patients, the Sleep Medicine Center provides loaner CPAP supplies including nasal or oral masks and headgear. This typically takes place during the office follow-up visit.
If a patient is having discomfort with his or her current mask or problems with compliance, then loaner equipment can be addressed during the office visit.