Hope2SleepGuide

Sleep Apnoea Forum Bringing Help + Support to the Patient

I was pleased to be part of this article in the Daily Mail about snoring in women, as it was a good opportunity to raise awareness of Sleep Apnoea, which as we know affects women and children too!

THE CONDITION THAT CAN KILL

Kath Hope, 54, lives in Hull with her husband, John, 57, a train guard. The couple have two children.

I've been a life-long snorer. Even as a child, my sister couldn't sleep in the same bedroom as me.

In adult life, I would sometimes wake up literally gasping for breath - which was most alarming. I thought it might be my snoring that was waking me. But since I wasn't overweight - I'm a size 12 and like to keep fit - I couldn't work out why I was snoring so badly.

A few years ago I started feeling tired and washed out all the time and would sometimes need to nap during the day. So I saw my GP. He diagnosed stress and anxiety (I had a busy job running a music school) and prescribed antidepressants.

But I was still exhausted and lacking in concentration, so I had blood tests for conditions such as an underactive thyroid, anaemia and even leukaemia, which was terrifying.

Eventually, I was referred to an ENT consultant, who diagnosed obstructive sleep apnoea. Although I was relieved to know what the problem was, I was stunned to hear that the condition could affect the heart and even be fatal.

I realised my mother must have had it, too - her snoring would make the house vibrate. She died of a heart attack at just 49 - if only we'd known about sleep apnoea.

I now use a special machine at night that's like a mask and delivers air via a tube through my nose: this continuous pressure prevents the airways from collapsing.

It's caused sores on my nose bridge, but special creams and covers have helped with this.

My husband, John, says it has changed our lives, as he can now sleep in peace. I have since set up a website - hope2sleep.co.uk - to raise awareness of sleep apnoea and support sufferers.

EXPERT VERDICT: Obstructive sleep apnoea is a potentially life-threatening sleep disorder which affects 4 per cent of middle-aged men and 2 per cent of middle-aged women. It occurs when the upper airway walls relax, narrow and collapse during sleep, so the patient repeatedly stops breathing. This explains why Kath was waking up struggling for breath.

Left untreated, it can lead to heart disease, stroke and diabetes. This is because the body responds to the dropping levels of oxygen by releasing adrenaline - which raises your blood pressure, glucose levels and increases your heart rate.

Lots of things contribute to the condition, including weight gain and genetics - you may come from a family with, say, small jaws, which results in narrower airways. It's more common in the over-50s and those with a neck circumference of more than 40cm.

Thankfully, Kath has been diagnosed. But it's vital to see a GP if you suspect a problem - if you wake up snorting or choking, for example. Studies have shown that if left untreated for 12 years, 35 per cent of severe cases can lead to heart attack or stroke and 15 per cent can be fatal.

The full article with the other ladies stories can be read here http://www.dailymail.co.uk/health/article-3470098/Why-women-snore-a...

Views: 200

Reply to This

Replies to This Discussion

Well done Kate for doing that :-)

Thanks Sleep2snore.  It certainly attracted a lot of people suspecting they have sleep apnoea and also existing sufferers needing support :)


Kath Hope said:

Thanks Sleep2snore.  It certainly attracted a lot of people suspecting they have sleep apnoea and also existing sufferers needing support :)

You would think that the Sleep Apnoea would be well known about by now with all the publicity on it, but no, it appears we still have a lot of work to do to get the facts out there.  You would think that GPs would be more active on the subject, but it appears they are still telling people to go loose some weight.  This annoys me, you need to feel better to loose the weight for starters and if you have no energy or get up and go left you are very unlikely to loose anything.  Most people seeking help would just go home and have some comfort food, which will only make things worse.  Doctors need to be more on the ball, yes, encourage people to loose weight, but they need to send them for the help they need first to get back some energy.  They don't apper to grasp the fact that most people have been suffering a long time before they seek help in the first place, only to be told to go loose some weight.  How deflating is that?

Once doctors have done tests to eliminate other causes of tiredness and fatigue they should be thinking Sleep Apnoea.  Do some basic checks at the surgery and then if they think it may be Sleep Apnoea they should be sending them for a sleep study.  The biggest problem was to get the doctors to think Sleep Apnoea, now it appears it is the way they handle patients that is the problem.  I hear only to often of people being told to go and loose some weight!  It is not just the overweight that suffer from Sleep Apnoea, some quite thin people also suffer from it, so there is no one category of people that escapes it, though the general trend is it to be overweight people, it is not always the case and it can be harder for thinner people to get their doctor to listen.

A small bit in the papers or the TV can get a flurry of people seeking help, it was an a clip in a magazine a lot of years ago that caught the eye of my partner.  She showed it to me, I was not even aware that I was stopping breathing through the night.  Went to doctor with the clip and was told by the senior partner in the surgery that "No one has died of Sleep Apnoea", that got her blood boiling and she went on the attack.  He finally said he would send me to Ear Nose & Throat for checks.  I think he thought the problem would go away, but it so happened after going through checks that other patients go through for other lung problems I got to see the consultant, he said that he suspected we were right and asked me to come into hospital for a test.  This I did and then he sent me for a full Sleep Study.  The doctor at the surgery was a bit sheepish after that, but he did allow us to put posters and leaflets in the surgery.  This led to a few others coming in asking for tests, he was shocked at this response and the leaflets, though were only agreed to be there for a month are still there and get topped up by their staff on a regular basis.  The consultant at the hospital (though retired now) started a publicity event, I was supposed to do it but couldn't, but I put him on to someone else.  There was a big spread in the local newspaper and also a bit on the local TV due to this which helped a lot of people think that this might be the answer to why they were so fatigued.  A lot came forward (some of which did not have Sleep Apnoea, but at least they were now on their doctors radar for something else) and a lot got the help they needed.  It di though make the departments a lot busier, but there is always a down side.

More doctors are aware of it now, but the public still need information that is ongoing to make new sufferers and old aware of Sleep Apnoea.

Yes Sleep2Snore things have certainly moved on since I got diagnosed - people thought I had a rare condition and most people hadn't even heard of it.  Now most people have heard of sleep apnoea, but still aren't sure what it is.  More GP's are aware these days, but sadly many of them are still only suspecting it in overweight people.  Children are the least to get diagnosed even though 1 in 30 of them suffer from it.  We sufferers have to keep sharing articles in the hope of reaching those undiagnosed and of course forums like this and other social media platforms help :)

Reply to Discussion

RSS

Sleep Apnoea Forum

New to the Sleep Apnoea Forum? 

1. Stop by our Sleep Apnoea Welcome Center to introduce yourself to the SleepGuide community.
2. Start a New Topic of Conversation.
3. Post your photos - of yourself, your old CPAP machine, your new CPAP machine, your pet, something about you!

Interested in advertising, have a problem or need to contact us? Click the Report an Issue page.

 

Latest Activity

Andrew Cribbin is now a member of Hope2SleepGuide
26 minutes ago
Zackary Allnutt replied to A Perry's discussion CPAP MACHINE FOR SALE
"Hi Perry, thanks for your quick reply but I think I am suited now. All the best, Zack"
36 minutes ago
A Perry replied to A Perry's discussion CPAP MACHINE FOR SALE
"Hi, I was looking for around £350.00, would you be interested?"
6 hours ago
Lindsey Brooks replied to Lindsey Brooks's discussion SELLING New AirSense 10 APAP in the group Buy-Sell-Swap
"Hi Zachary, it is still available if you are interested. :) My email is heidibrooks2003@gmail.com if you would like to discuss it there and I could give you my number. Thanks!!"
8 hours ago
Zackary Allnutt replied to A Perry's discussion CPAP MACHINE FOR SALE
"Hi, is this still available, how much are you looking for?"
8 hours ago
Zackary Allnutt replied to David henderson's discussion I have a used RESMED Escape11 S8 that I would like to sell in the group Buy-Sell-Swap
"Hi David, is this sold?"
8 hours ago
Zackary Allnutt replied to Lindsey Brooks's discussion SELLING New AirSense 10 APAP in the group Buy-Sell-Swap
"Hi, realise this was over a month ago, but just in case, is it still available? Thanks."
8 hours ago
Zackary Allnutt joined The SleepGuide Crew's group
8 hours ago
Hazel Hall is now a member of Hope2SleepGuide
yesterday
A Perry is now a member of Hope2SleepGuide
Sep 13
Kevin Pigott posted a discussion

Portable Machines

Does anyone have experience of using a portable machine? I have been invited to join a walking holiday in the far east and at some overnight stops there may be no 220V supply for a mains operated machine.  Kevin.See More
Sep 13
Mauro Cipriani replied to Mauro Cipriani's discussion Side Effects of CPAP / Corneal Ulcer
"Hi Kath, thanks for your reply. Just had an eye Clinic appointment and consultant fairly certain that this is attributable to mask leakage. I suffer with dry eyes and have prescribed gels and drops anyway, need to put more gel in. I will try some…"
Sep 11
Kath Hope replied to Susan Mooney's discussion Jury Service
"Sorry to hear that Susan.  If he's still so tired it would be worth asking for help with the clinic in case his pressures need adjusting (assuming he uses his CPAP for all sleeps of course, as that would cause tiredness).  If his…"
Sep 8
Susan Mooney replied to Susan Mooney's discussion Jury Service
"Thanks Kath, he has been on cpap for a few years now and has regular check ups but is still extremely tired when he relaxes, he is also self employed which is another stumbling point. They are a pain these jury service, will need to look into it.…"
Sep 7
Kath Hope replied to Susan Mooney's discussion Jury Service
"Hi Susan and welcome :) Regarding your question about jury service, I don't know much about the exemptions as I've never been called up and hope I aren't! However, if your husband is on good CPAP therapy and approved by the DVLA to…"
Sep 7
Kath Hope replied to Mauro Cipriani's discussion Side Effects of CPAP / Corneal Ulcer
"Sorry you've had no response to this post Mauro as I was hoping someone may have an answer, as corneal ulcer's isn't something I've heard of caused by CPAP.  However, we do often warn of why it's important to ensure the…"
Sep 7
Susan Mooney posted a discussion

Jury Service

Hello,Thanks for adding me...my husband has chronic sleep apnea and has just received papers for jury service. Does anyone know if he can be exempt from this?SueSee More
Sep 6
Susan Mooney is now a member of Hope2SleepGuide
Sep 6
joy Fuchter is now a member of Hope2SleepGuide
Sep 4
Kath Hope replied to The SleepGuide Crew's discussion Welcome to our Forum - Feel Free to Introduce Yourself Here.
"Hi Julia.  I struggle with neck pain too and I use the alternative softcap headgear.Due to the fact the straps stick anywhere on the cap it means I can angle the lower straps upwards instead of across the back of my neck, as I have to have my…"
Sep 3

© 2017   Created by The SleepGuide Crew.   Powered by

Badges  |  Report an Issue  |  Terms of Service