Why can't you use an NPA for sleep apnea?

Why isn’t an NPA - nasopharyngeal airway a solution for those with sleep apnea? Are there complications with leaving these in that long (overnight)? I would imagine it might affect the condition of the mucousa and possibly irritate the hell out of the lining even while using lubricant… I am just curious if anyone has some info on this.

It seems like the logical solution, but since it is not a common treatment, I was wondering exactly why.

Owwww!!! I would much rather use air pressure to keep my airway open, thank you very much!

The device you mention is overkill.

Except with air pressure you are tied to a large, obvious device, which is an unbearable thought for some. I’d rather have my septum ripped out with no anesthetic than face the prospect of going to bed with a mask and a pump strapped onto my head for the rest of my life. The best I can describe the tought is akin to a thought of losing a major limb.

Hmmm, choose your poison: Ouch, or royal pain in the ass.

Overkill is in the eye of the beholder. This is GQ, by the way.

I’d be worried that using the NPA chronically for 6 to 7 hours every night would eventually erode the septum, the turbinates and the nasopharynx. Re-inserting it would cause daily extra trauma too.

If you don’t want the CPAP mask and machine, hie thee to a good ENT for palate and tongue surgery.

IMHO. From someone with patients on CPAP and others who have had the surgery. And one who had the surgery but still has to use CPAP. Oh, and one patient with chronic NG tube feedings whose nose is starting to look like mammoth cave.

In ICU we use them short term, but as Qadgop the Mercotan says, they would cause damage over time. We have to remove them periodicly to avoid pressure areas.
Another problem, is, they are very effective in patients not fully awake, but in the awake person, they cause considerable pain and gagging. Even when they are exactly the correct size, they tend to move around just enough to tickle.
Also, air passing over the turbinates is warmed or cooled as needed, as well as being cleaned and moistened.
The NPA causes a dry, sore throat, reducing the protection afforded by moist mucus membranes

Uncontrollable sneezing is another problem.

In that case, I sincerly wish you don’t develop the problem. But, as a CPAP user for five years, I can tell you that it’s not that big a deal. My machine runs flawlessly, I have to put a half-cup of distilled water in the reservior every third day or so (cost - 89¢ a gallon) and clean the thing every once in a while. That’s it.

Just about the only thing I can’t do is sleep facing my wife, who has expressed an objection to a cold stream of air being blown on her.

I will admit that I felt extremely foolish the first time I put one on, and if Mrs. Hometownboy had laughed at that moment, it would have been all over.

There is even a plus side to CPAP. I took Amtrak to visit my son in college a year ago in April (WAY cheaper than flying) and it was a 48-hour trip each way. Using the CPAP, I was able to fall asleep comfortably and quickly in the only-slightly-reclining train seat.

I have used it comfortably in hotel rooms across the U.S. (though sometimes I have to unplug either the clock radio or the bedside light. It’s no big deal.

I could even go camping, were I inclined to like smoke in my face and bugs in my food, as do some of my friends with sleep apnea, who simply take a motorcycle battery with an inverter. They say it’s good for three nights.

The real question is, why can’t you ask your multitude of questions on sleep apnea to a doctor?

Er, because that would cost money?

So would an NPA, what’s your point?

My point is that there was no need for the tedious snarky response about “ask a doctor” that I see every medical-related thread.

Well last time I checked no-one on the SDMB was actually allowed by the rules to provide a medical opinion.
Fuel starts up GQ threads on his apnea, obviously looking for medical opinions. Last month he wanted to shove something down his trachea. But OH NO, he didn’t really want to. He just wanted to know whether it would work IN THEORY and would it be able to replace a CPAP. He wasn’t going to attempt it or anything.

I wouldn’t have given the standard snarky reply if I hadn’t seen Fuel looking for medical opinions 3 times before.

Oh, so your standard snarky reply was just a bit of standard snarky junior modding?

Was yours?

No. This hijack’s gone on long enough.

I don’t quite understand the willingness (between this OP and the one a while ago about the rigid tracheal airway) to INTUBATE yourself rather than strap on a mask at night. Geesh…I’d rather pay someone to give me constant mouth-to-mouth breathing all night than stick a tube down my throat!

Amen to that. After having to wake up after a major surgery before they’d extubate me, I can’t imagine how that would be the better option. It was horrible. Breathing during surgery is good, of course, but that’s possibly the last place on my body I’d want a tube shoved into (at least while I’m awake!) again. Every NIGHT??? Boggles the mind.

Hmmm, I don’t remember mentioning wanting to get intubated. Similar ideas, but not that. I happen to be educated in the EMS field and I know that no one can tolerate that being awake, so I don’t know how I would have considered that as a possible solution for me. Cite?

Look, doctors aren’t magicians. They are trained and educated in a field, they are not necessarily problem solving machines like many people on this board. The truth is, and correct me if I am wrong, in this country, doctors don’t/can’t think for themselves about specific needs people may have (because of legal reasons), they have to be fed their knowledge from different associations and and boards, and then they implement/apply this knowledge directly to the citizens of this country in a specific way. Nothing more. Doctors that come into contact with the public can’t make any changes unless they are told it is ok to make a change. Doctors in this country can’t move the healthcare industry forward unless they write in a journal first and wait years for the big dogs to make the move. Doctors are not necessarily special people except for their education and their acuity/determination in gaining that education. Doctors are puppets of the Healthcare industry first and foremost… then some of the special ones actually break through their paradigm to become problem solvers and caregivers.

In summary, doctors don’t know any more than educated laypeople about treatments that aren’t currently being practiced. I am preparing an e-mail to my doctor right now to ask about the Pillar procedure, to ask about NPA’s and to ask about my nasal headset problem. But all along, I am only going to ask him what everyone else in the industry is saying, not what he thinks. He knows the talk of the times and the history of trials into certain procedures, and that is what I need to know. I am sure he is a sharper guy than 99% of the population, but he doesn’t have the motivation nor the habits to provide me with what I need.

I am always having to explain myself on this board in order to ask a question. Good riddance.

WHat about an NPA with a smaller diameter, but is the same length?