caret icon Back to all discussions

Using CPAP machine during COVID and a chest infection

Hi all,

I'm hoping for some advice. After finally getting used to my CPAP machine, I came down with Covid and a chest infection in December. I'm still battling the chest infection now with strong antibiotics and steroids.

However, whenever I try to use my CPAP machine I only last a few minutes before I erupt into a coughing fit. I've tried everything - I use a humidifier and heated tube. I've tried the auto setting and the highest setting. I also try to sleep upright with a contour pillow.

Should I stop using the machine until I get over my chest infection? I make sure to clean the mask with wipes every day and disinfect the humidifier and tube once a week with warm water and a small of white vinegar.

Any tips anyone could give would be much appreciated.

I currently use the ResMed AirSense 10 with AirFit F30 Full Mask and climate tube. I also use the heated humidifier.

  1. Hi there! I just wanted to check in and see how you're feeling ... did you finally get over your chest cold? What did you decide to do about using your CPAP during that time? Hope all is well and that you're back to using it without issue. 😀 We're here if you need us. -Melissa, sleep apnea team

    1. Hi . CPAPs are great for clearing the sinuses while fighting head colds, but your situation is different since you have congestion in your chest. Ultimately, your pulminologist would be the best person to ask since we are not medical experts, but I can tell you that my husband benefited from taking a break when he was having coughing fits due to chest congestion. His trachea was severely irritated and it seemed the rush of air, even when humid, made it worse. It's a balancing act though. You have to consider the benefits and risks of going without in this situation. Also, some insurance companies will not cover supplies if you don't use your CPAP regularly. So you might want to check on the your insurance company's requirements before making a decision. As his chest cleared, my husband also benefited from benzonatate, a prescription medicine that reduces the cough reflex. If coughing is necessary to clear your lungs, benzonatate is not a good idea, but if you are coughing because of irritation, it can help reduce the cough and allow your trachea to heal. It might be worth asking your doctor about whether it would be appropriate for you. I hope this helps and that you improve quickly. Keep us posted, if you don't mind. I would like to hear how you are doing and also what your doctor recommends. Sending lots of healing vibes your way. - Lori (Team Member)

      Please read our rules before posting.