What is the difference between adaptive servo-ventilation and CPAP?

I have been doing research on sleep apnea, and it appears that adaptive servo-ventilation and CPAP both are used to treat it. What is the difference between these two machines and which is more effective?

Doctors Answers (1)

Robert C. Jones, M.D.
Answered on: 11/15/2013

CPAP is an acronym for continuous positive airway pressure. It is used for treating obstructive sleep apnea by forcing a constant flow of air into the patient thus opening the airway. Adaptive servo-ventilation or ASV is used for patients who need actual mechanical assistance to maintain inhalation and exhalation due to central sleep apnea. In the case of central apnea the brain is not responding to the lack of air caused by an apnea. To initiate breathing the use of ASV is required in this case.