Why Expect Anything Positive?
Last updated: November 2023
I knew for years that I had some form of sleep apnea, especially after talking with other individuals in the industry that both my wife and I were a part of for more than 30 years. I think - like most - it just went untreated. Then I was diagnosed with aggressive stage 4 high-grade prostate cancer and was ordered by my primary to see a sleep specialist, which I actually looked forward to.
My first attempt to treat my sleep apnea
After the initial interview with the sleep specialist, which was over an hour and a half, it was definitely time to set up the overnight sleep study. Only stopped 110 times - or think they call them events - an hour. I tested positive for sleep apnea with flying colors.
I was able to purchase my continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) machine outright and not use my insurance due to compliant and mandatory requirements from insurance to avoid any chargebacks.
I settled in with my favorite mask and increased the pressure. I imagined waking up in the morning all charged up and ready to hit the day running, right? WRONG. WRONG. WRONG. Never happened in over a year. Actually, I don't think I felt any different than I did previously without the machine. At the end of all this, I was told I am in that 30% category of patients where a CPAP just doesn't help at all. This was all on the 1st and only sleep lab I ever participated in at the time.
Here we go again
Fast forward a couple of years without the machine, and I had a heart attack. I did get a fantastic helicopter ride out of that deal though. A few short months later, my cardiologist asked if I ever had a sleep study done to which I replied, "Yes, and don't get me started." He then replied, "Well, I'm sending you to my sleep specialist here in town, and let's see what she says."
So, here we go again doing the same thing over and over expecting different results as the saying goes. Another positive confirmation of sleep apnea. "Go figure," I thought to myself.
I'm doomed to have no positive thoughts
The doctor and I already discussed that I'm not interested in doing the machine again when it didn't offer any benefit to me the first time. I was under the impression that she had 3 or 4 other things she could try. Not sure what happened but I can tell you nothing happened after my last follow-up. No alternatives whatsoever other than 3 tennis balls on my lower back to keep me from sleeping on my back when my apnea is at its worst. Wow, this was all worth it! NOT.
So, with almost 23 documented medical issues that are ongoing in one form or another, I'm doomed to have no positive thoughts toward solving my sleep problems. I'll just continue living the dream as I was!
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