Get your Health question answered in 3 easy steps

148 Doctors Online
Owl Image
MD
Dr. Andrew Rynne

Family Physician

Exp 18 years

I will be looking into your question and guiding you through the process. Please write your question below.

Suggest treatment for central sleep apnea

Answered by
Owl Image
Dr. Karen Steinberg

Internal Medicine Specialist

Practicing since :1981

Answered : 824 Questions

Question
so I am suffering from central sleep apnea I believe. ..I wake up and gasp for air at least 5-20 times before I can actually go to sleep...it only happens or I'm only aware of it when I'm transisioning from awake to sleep..the more I read up on it I find that it is most likely due to a heart Condition or congestive heart failure..as I look at the symptoms alot of them relate to me. I have been feeling pretty bad for the past like month or so been to doc numerous times and to the emergency room for palpitations...they keep telling me it's anxiety and stress. I also had a complete echo a ekg and stress test done within the last year because of the palps..I guess I want to know could I have developed congestive heart failure within the lates year and how do all my tests keep.coming back ok when I obviously have something going on...all blood work was good also
please help
Mon, 11 Aug 2014 in General Health
 
 
Answered by Dr. Karen Steinberg 1 hour later
Brief Answer:
Recommend a sleep study

Detailed Answer:
Hi, thank you for using Healthcare Magic.

To diagnose any type of sleep apnea, it is best to have a complete sleep study. This test will identify how low your oxygen level is going while you are asleep. You could be having episodes you are not aware of during deeper sleep, which the test would also identify. The studies you had for your heart should identify congestive heart failure. It can also be identified on exam, and it sounds like you have been seen several times and no one has diagnosed it, so I do not think this is your problem. It is true that sleep apnea can eventually result in heart failure and other problems, but this is only after many years of severe untreated apnea. Again, it is important to make this diagnosis by a sleep study. Anxiety and stress are real conditions that can also cause the symptoms you are having, and would not show up on any tests you had. Anxiety in particular can cause hyperventilation, which results in many frightening symptoms such as shortness of breath, tingling sensations, muscle cramps, and dizziness, among others. Talk to your doctor about getting a sleep study and don't worry about heart failure. You would have a lot more obvious symptoms if you had it and abnormalities would have shown up on your tests and examinations.

Hope this answers your query. If you have further questions, I would be happy to answer them.
Above answer was peer-reviewed by
 
Follow-up: Suggest treatment for central sleep apnea 11 minutes later
thank you...i did have a sleep study done back in 2012...came back normal...but at that time it was not happening anywhere as frequent as now...could things have changed in the last 2 years? or maybe I didn't have any APNEA episodes the night of the study? although I think I remember them telling me that if I had apnea it would show every single night even if I felt nothing.
 
 
Answered by Dr. Karen Steinberg 17 minutes later
Brief Answer:
Perhaps something changed

Detailed Answer:
Hi,

If you have sleep apnea, it usually does show up every night. What did you get the sleep study for 2 years ago? Was it the same problem? There are other types of sleep disorders besides apnea that can be diagnosed with a sleep study. If your symptoms are more frequent or different from before, I would consider repeating the study. If it's still negative, I suggest asking your doctor about the possibility of anxiety and hyperventilation, and getting treatment for that.

Hope this helps.
Above answer was peer-reviewed by
 
Follow-up: Suggest treatment for central sleep apnea 13 minutes later
I had it done cause I would wake up and have to gasp for air..now within the last month or so almost every night some nights are better than others...right as I am transisioning from wake to sleep I gasp for air...I don't not feel obstructed I do not feel short of breath I do not feel anything besides like my brain not telling me to take a breath. that's why I'm thinking central sleep apnea but then it's worring me I have heart problems...I have been under a great amount of stress the last month and have many other symptoms but this one and my palpitations are freaking me out...I don't want to die in my sleep and I have to have referrals to the specialist and they are booked out like 2-3 weeks...I'm so tired and scared to fall asleep it's horrible
 
 
Answered by Dr. Karen Steinberg 26 minutes later
Brief Answer:
Talk to your doctor about anxiety treatment

Detailed Answer:
It seems like you are worrying yourself into a frenzy and making your symptoms worse. Anxiety can create frightening symptoms that can make you even more anxious and continue the symptoms. Your tests have been negative and you have seen doctors numerous times and they have not found anything serious. I know this is scary but try to remember that all your tests and exams are saying you have nothing life-threatening. Yes, you do have something going on, but I think it is anxiety and hyperventilation. When you hyperventilate, some of the blood chemistries change temporarily and this could cause your brain to tell you not to take a breath for a moment. What happens is the carbon dioxide drops too low in your blood, and this signals the body to hold your breath a moment till it comes up. Breathing into a paper bag for a few moments when this happens can also help bring the carbon dioxide level to normal. Palpitations are common with anxiety because your body is producing a lot of stress hormones that stimulate the heart. None of this will cause you to die in your sleep. Please talk to your family doctor about getting some medicine to help with the anxiety. Once that is controlled, a lot of these symptoms should go away.
Above answer was peer-reviewed by
 
Follow-up: Suggest treatment for central sleep apnea 2 hours later
thank u I appreciate the feedback...it's just a very uncomfortable feeling having no control over all these symptoms
 
 
Answered by Dr. Karen Steinberg 49 minutes later
Brief Answer:
Try to relax

Detailed Answer:
I know how uncomfortable it is. Anxiety attacks and hyperventilation can really make you feel out of control. Try using the paper bag breathing method when you are having the gasping episodes. Look into meditation or other techniques such as Tai Chi to help you relax. And think about seeing your doctor for specific anxiety treatment. This will help.
Above answer was peer-reviewed by
 
premium_optimized

The User accepted the expert's answer

Share on
Question is related to
Diseases and Conditions ,   ,   ,   ,   ,  
Lab Tests

Recent questions on Stress test

doctor1 MD

Merry Christmas! Sharka knows most my symptoms with bigeminy noe blood pressure and sudden onset of periodically high heartrate up towards 180-200 bpm from nowhere which is never caught on ecg or holter amd ectracystoles that get worse DURING...

doctor1 MD

Hi dr xxxxxxxx as requested I had blood panel done and they came back normal no signs of heart attack or enzymes I have a stress test set up tomorrow the ecg that was uploaded already I will ask him to take a look my question is I quit smoking 9...

doctor1 MD

I am male 93 years young currently under treatment for bladder cancer cancerous material removed and now I am thru thte second of the six shot weekly program. my problem now is shortness of breath . my heart dr. just completed a neucular stress...

doctor1 MD

Hi, may I answer your health queries right now ? Please type your query here...Hi: I had a routine physical & EKG which I failed. I took another and passed; then a stress test & nuclear stress test with a Cardiac MD, who recommended angioplasty. A second opinion from another cardiologist (D.O.) reviewed the tests & said I don't need this. The 2nd D.O. put me on niacin, sterols, and a multivitamin. I am 70, in great physical shape, bmi of 27, have no symptoms, and did the stress tests to the max, obtaining a heart rate of 150 in 11 minutes. Who is right? 1/2 my family belives the MD, etc. Jerry

doctor1 MD

I have been having chest discomfort for two months, I saw my dr. he did an ekg and it was abnormal (PVC's) I had an echo stress test today and my dr. says all looks normal. He sent me home with a holter for a month and beta blockers. My resting heartrate is between 80 and 100, and in the first three minutes of stress test , hr was 160. Family hist. is father as well as 12 of his male siblings all have has massive heart attacks without any positive stress test warnings....I am a 40 year old wowan no drinker, non smoker. Should I be concerned?

doctor1 MD

persistant intermittant episodes of chest spasms and trembling sensations around left lower pectorial region and upper rib cage....sometimes a week or 2 go by without symptons...then out of nowhere re-appear again...latest episode lasted 24 hours....had stress test 2 months ago and passed with flying colors...no history of heart problems ,am not over-weight and excercise regularly...I m 65 years old

doctor1 MD

My mother is of age 58 and she does not smoke, has never suffered a heart attack, never complained of chest pain but her stress test is positive. We are advised of Thallium Stress Test. Can you please advise what is the difference between Thallium Stress Test and Coronory angiography? Also, should I go for these tests since my mother is reluctant to do those since she is fit and fine right now? Bhavesh Mehta.