I have had my 3rd sleep study that shows I have primarily central sleep apnea, but also obstructive. Where can I find a doctor that can prescribe the correct solution for both types of sleep apnea and are there any drug options available to me? I don't want to be hooked up to a machine all night long, I already use one and that alone hasn't helped my sleep apnea.
Doctors Answers (4)
You have 2 different types of apnea that require a very specific machine to fix your problem. There are no medications that treat either effectively. The most important thing for you to do is work with your Board Certified Sleep Physician to determine if you require pressure changes and are receiving the right type of pressure delivery.
You need to contact and speak with your primary care physician who can then refer you to a physician who specializes and is trained in sleep medicine. That person can then prescribe a protocol to help with your central and obstructive sleep apnea. I am a dentist who assists in the treatment of obstructive sleep apnea only by fabricating oral appliances for this purpose.
In my opinion, the medical community needs to be asking WHY THE INFLAMMATION, both structurally as in Obstructive Sleep Apnea, as well as the inflammation found in neural tissue, as in Central Apnea. What about toxicity? Those are questions to be asking your medical doctor.
The cause for Central Sleep Apnea is due to your brain stem respiratory center not operating correctly. This can be secondary to medications, heart or lung disease, circulatory issues, stroke, infection, brain injury, etc. There are devices which address the central events and can be ordered by a board certified sleep specialist. Sometimes oxygen is also necessary. Unless a correctable cause can be found, you will likely best be "hooked up to a machine" all night long. There are some medications which, in theory, stimulate the respiratory drive but they only help in mild cases. Some central sleep apneas are caused by the obstructive apnea (by interfering with the normal oxygen and carbon dioxide ratios). These patients often respond well to either CPAP or Bi level machines.