sleep study sleep apnea fibromyalgia

Discussion in 'Fibromyalgia Main Forum' started by LibraryBee, Mar 29, 2007.

  1. LibraryBee

    LibraryBee New Member

    to make a very long story short, i've felt fibromyalgia symptoms coming on and gradually worsening for the past four or five years now.

    i've talked at length to my chiropractor about it and she's fairly convinced that i have it.
    for multiple reasons, mainly fear and a previous lack of insurance and money, i haven't mentioned it to my regular doctor even though i've had good insurance for the past two years. until today, that is. it's not getting better, it's getting worse, and i need to at least have a (somewhat) firm diagnosis so that i can proceed from there, and try to treat it naturally, which is what i try to do with my health.

    anyway, i spoke to her today and brought my detailed list of all my weird symptoms, when it all started, different episodes i've noted throughout the years, and requested that i'd like to see a rheumatologist. she was very kind, as she always is, and talked a bit about pursuing other tests first to rule things out before we take that step. this is reasonable to me. i got my thyroid checked, which i haven't done in 3 years, and she did another blood test to check the inflammation levels in my muscles, and gave me a prescription for meloxicam to take for the next 2 weeks before i go back to her, to see if it helps my chronic pain.
    she mentioned a next step being a sleep study because sleep apnea could bring this kind of achiness.

    here comes my question to you all: have you done sleep studies, and how many of you have sleep apnea? what does the sleep study usually entail (what's it like? i'm nervous) and how do you treat your apnea?

    and finally, i'm feeling a little discouraged that if i do have sleep apnea, she'll basically stop there and consider that my diagnosis. in my gut i know there's more going on than that.
    any experiences with this kind of scenario? how would you handle it?

    thanks so much for patiently reading all of that. :)
  2. irishprincess

    irishprincess New Member

    my husband went to a sleep study, he has sleep apnea but his is a result of being overweight. but what it entails is sleeping overnight in this room with wires attached, mind you nothing hurts and they watch you as you sleep. i think if one is nervous you can request a sleep turns out my husband had it real bad cause of the weight and they found he stopped breathing more times than what was safe. nothing can happen to you when you are being monitered every minute. so you see there really is nothing to be nervous about when you are not alone not for one minute.
  3. moab341

    moab341 New Member

    I had one last week, but don't have the results yet.
    Lots of wires, and they monitor and watch you all night long.
    They monitor everything, so they can tell if you get enough Stage 4 sleep or if you have apnea.

    It's harmless....take your own pillow!!!
  4. tngirl

    tngirl New Member

    My sleep apnea was diagnosed before the fibro.

    I had a sleep study about 4 years ago. I went to a sleep center and the room was about like a hotel room but very quiet and had room darkening drapes. There was also a TV and a recliner.

    They told me to follow my usual bedtime routine.

    Electrodes were attached (they are adhesive) to several places on my head and legs. An oxygen sensor was on one finger.

    The equipment monitors your oxigen level and the number of apnea episodes or partial awakenings you have, also if you have periodic limb movement. They will be able to tell if you are entering all the stages of sleep. Many people with fibromyalgia also have something called an alpha delta sleep pattern. That means that even in the deep stages your brain has awake like bursts. It feels like you are just dozing, you can still hear everything.

    There is also a camera in the room (very small!) Medical personnel monitor you all night. If you have very severe sleep apnea they may wake you up and immediately put you on a cpap machine.

    There was a complete bath, I needed it the next morning to get all the gunk off.

    Some doctors will give you something to help you sleep, like ambien or valium because it's harder to fall asleep with all the stuff attached. Some are of the opinion that they want to see your natural sleep pattern.

    After the inital sleep study they scheduled me to go for another study to see how my sleep improved with cpap treatment and to figure out just how much pressure is needed to keep your airway open.

    Cpap (continuous positive airway pressure) is the most common treatment, many respond very well. There are other options including dental appliances, and surgery (not everyone is a candidate). Cpap is considered safe and very effective.

    My advice on cpap would be to get one with a built in heated humidifier, try lots of masks, all will not feel the same. Some have to become accustomed to it by wearing it a few hours then taking it off.

    You have probably built up a sleep deficit so you may sleep longer hours at first and still be very tired.

    Cpap helped but did not solve all my problems. I would say it's worth trying any improvement helps.

    I'm claustrophobic so I can't stand having it on when I'm wide awake. I prefer the masks with nasal pillows because it's much less restrictive, less air leaks, etc.

    This is probably more than you ever wanted to know about sleep studies!

    It does take some getting used to. If you have to have cpap

  5. LibraryBee

    LibraryBee New Member

    thank you all so much for your replies.

    i'm having a hard time not freaking out about this -- the past four or five years have brought one thing after another, health-wise, so i've become a bit of a hypochondriac, you know?

    anyway, i guess i will just wait and see. i never wake up in the night not being able to breathe -- you all that have sleep apnea, did you do this before being diagnosed?

    like someone above mentioned, i'm very claustrophobic and the thought of the cpap machine is scary...
  6. tngirl

    tngirl New Member

    I didn't realize that I was not breathing. I was certain I didn't have it, imagine my shock when I did!

    I made me feel weird to go to sleep knowing I was not breathing. There were a few days before I got my cpap machine.

    Yet I was having 1 episode every minute of REM sleep and every 16 minutes during the other stages.

    My husband didn't notice either, but he's a very heavy sleeper.

    Since I'm claustrophobic it was hard to find the right mask for me. I use the mirage swift nasal system. You can look it up on the internet if you want to look at it, if you just put cpap masks in the search (google or whatever)you can see lots of masks. Yes, some are quite restrictive.

    I had eye surgery once and they covered my head and strapped my arms down (should have been out, but came too in the operating room. I freaked out and said I can't breathe, help! the doctor replied, yes you can, you have oxygen in your nose. Oh yeah...I had forgotten that. I then managed to talk them into letting my arms go.

    [This Message was Edited on 03/29/2007]
  7. LibraryBee

    LibraryBee New Member

    tngirl, i just had two rounds of laser surgery on my right eye within the past three weeks -- talk about stressful. it sounds like yours was more stressful, though. my retina tore, and i won't really know until my 2-month check-up if the laser surgery worked or if i'll have to have more intensive surgery.

    it's always something, isn't it?

    thanks for the tips on better cpap masks.
  8. LibraryBee

    LibraryBee New Member

    thank you so much! that was very reassuring and i needed that information. i heard 'sleep apnea' and just got all panicky. i think my mind and body are just overwhelmed by everything and every week it seems like a new, weird symptom or ailment is coming my way and it makes me anxiety-ridden.

    thanks again.
  9. JLH

    JLH New Member

    I had a sleep study done and was found to have obstructive sleep apnea. I also found that, even though my oxygen levels were perfectly normal during the day, they dropped to 74% at night.

    I also discovered that the sleep apnea was affecting and causing some of my heart problems!

    I now sleep with a CPAP machine with oxygen piped into it.

    Sleep studies are expensive, so make sure your insurance will cover it before you have it.

    If you do find that you have a sleep problem, your doc does not have to stop there if you don't want her to! Just speak up and tell her what else you want her to explore!

    Good luck!