Differences Between A CPAP And BIPAP Machine

Is A BIPAP Machine Different From A CPAP Machine?

BIPAP which stands for Bilevel Positive Airway Pressure, works in a similar way to CPAP machines (Continuous Positive Airway Pressure). It is a non-invasive form of therapy meant to treat patients who have sleep apnoea. Both of these machines work by delivering pressurized air to a patient's airways through a mask. During sleep apnea, a person's airway collapses, leading to obstructive breathing. The pressurized air helps in preventing the airways from collapsing. These two machines allow a patient to breathe easily and sleep peacefully throughout the night.

Why Is BIPAP Different From CPAP?

The majority of patients suffering from sleep apnea tend to use CPAP as a go-treatment. CPAP machines tend to deliver a continuous and steady flow of pressurized air into a patient's airways. The downside with CPAP machines is that they deliver a single pressure throughout. Some patients have complained about the pressure makes it difficult to sleep at night. This has been addressed by including a ramp feature in some CPAP machines that allows lower pressure of air to be delivered, which gradually increases throughout the night. However, there are some patients that still find trouble with this.

BIPAP machines on the other hand have a timing feature that is able to measure the amount of breaths a patient takes per minute. If the machine detects that the breaths per minute are above the limit, then the machine will force the patient to breathe by increasing the air pressure.

The difference between the two machines is that CPAP has only one pressure setting, while BIPAP has two. The dual settings in the latter allow for more air to get into and out of a patient's lungs.

Will You Benefit From BIPAP therapy?

- This machine is meant for patients who are unsatisfied with their form of treatment using CPAP.

- It is prescribed for patients who have low oxygen levels or high pressure settings.

- It is useful for patients who suffer from lung disorders.

- It is used to treat patients who have cardiopulmonary disorders.

Benefits Of Using BIPAP therapy

There are a number of reasons as to why some patients prefer BIPAP therapy:

1. It can be used to treat central apnea which is unresponsive to CPAP.

2. Most patients have a good compliance rate with BIPAP machines.

3. Clinical statistics show that BIPAP machines are effective in improving blood gas levels.

Side Effects Of BIPAP machines

These are some of the side effects that patients have reported after using BIPAP machines:

1. Dry nose and mouth.

2. General discomfort.

3. Nasal congestion, sinusitis, sneezing and coughing.

4. Mask air leaks which lead to breathing difficulties.

5. Rhinitis.

6. Ill-fitting masks. This can be fixed by choosing a mask size and style that fits you.

Your doctor will be able to determine whether CPAP or BIPAP will be better suited for you.

If you were previously using a CPAP machine you will find that a BIPAP machine works the same. Your doctor may need to show you how to change a few settings after which you should be able to use on your own.

At Benchmark Sleep Services we specifically deal with sleeping disorders. Christian Rabatsch at Benchmark Sleep Services, has diverse experience dealing with sleeping disorders for many years. For more information about sleep services simply visit our website.

This article was published on 13 Apr 2016 and has been viewed 505 times
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