Discussion in 'Off-Topic Chat' started by Hells Bones, Mar 25, 2008.
Anyone else suffering from lack of sleep?
You woke me up to ask me that?
Yes, I am a chronic pain sufferer, now with added sleep apnoea - and if you find any way to get taken seriously by a GP on any issue regarding sleep, do let me know- I had thought of going round and keeping HIM awake!
There was an item about sleep apnoea on the Today programme on Radio 4 this morning and a "cure" was mentioned.
You can listen to it here http://www.bbc.co.uk/radio4/today/listenagain/
GPs are certainly more attuned to SA now that when I first raised it 20 years ago. My GP took it seriously when I was able to point to my wife whacking me on the shoulder and screaming "BREATHE!" as evidence that there was an issue.
If GP1 doesn't take you seriously, politely refuse to leave the surgery until you've been given a second opinion.
Without boring everyone to death, I am afraid I have been trying for so many years to get effective treatment for a number of conditions, with a whole serious of Doctors, GPs and Consultants. Some very treatable, some not.
Sleep apnoea seems to come under the same category as skin tags, a minor rash or "a bad back" when it comes to interesting Doctors in it, probably because a) they know NOWT about it, and b)even if they do, there is not an effective treatment (even the manufacturer of the equipment claims only a 27% uptake), as the cure is possibly more disturbing than the condition! Even if I was willing to buy my own, it needs a prescription (and of course a specialist diagnosis first), and better part of 1500 quid for at best a 27% chance of it being any use at all.
Problem with sleep apnoea, is it is a killer. It destroys sufferer's hearts, simple as that. There is another approach to a treatment for me personally, related to resolving other conditions I have, but there is a far less chance of that being paid for on the NHS.
If I refused to leave the Doctors surgery every time I had something that was say, undiagnosed or where no treatment is going to follow, then I would probably be wisest to take a furniture van with my house contents, as I would need to move in! I wouldn't mind, I don't even think I have a problem with my current GP, and think he is better than average, even if, I, (like most people suddenly find when they try!) can no longer book any sort of appointment any more!
That apart, one of the real problems is, PCTs (Primary Car Trusts) won't PAY for anything they possibly can avoid paying for, and this, (and also a couple of other conditions I have), comes right into the "no way" category. Even getting diagnosed for anything not too obvious is a challenge, it was always hard, but is very much harder now. As an example, It took about 5 years to see a Pain Consultant, and 7 years to get an MRI scan, as it would cost 400 quid at the time, the supposition was that it was supposed to be "not necessary," although it turned out to BE necessary, but I had to fight long and hard; I eventually did get that, unfortunately the treatment that followed on made me a lot worse, and there's always that distinct possibility :-(
After my bought with a Pulmonary Embolism, I was also diagnosed with Sleep Apnea. I went through the sleep test and I stopped breathing 36 times an hour. That can easily lead to congestive heart failure.
I got a sleep mask and a CPAP machine. I sleep much better, no outrageous snoring AND when they did a heart stress test when I had the Pulmonary Embolism (60% of my lungs were filled with clots -- I nearly died. The pulmonologist said if I had EVER smoked in my life or even hung our in pubs I probably would have died).
Anyway, I passed the stress test with only 60% of my lungs functional. Without the CPAP machine and mask, I would never sleep. Severe cases of sleep apnea are nothing to fool with. Professional athletes have been known to die in their sleep because they thought they slept fine at night.
You can understand why I am for the no smoking laws in public places. My test did cost $2000 which at the time was about £2000. The machine and mask another £600. I am alive today only because of that machine.
I would not take it too lightly. Besides, if it works, you will sleep better than you imagined.
Wherryman: You win the creative answer award :tup
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