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Does nighttime coughing affect AHI index?

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cargo1954 +0 points · over 4 years ago Original Poster

Hi,

I was diagnosed with mild SA and have been an auto CPAP (Resmed autoset 10) for the past 8 months. My AHI index numbers have been averaging between 3-6 with most of my apneas being hypopneas. I developed a dry cough a few days ago that seems to get worse if I wake up to go to the bathroom and then try to fall back asleep. The coughing keeps me up. When I finally do get up, I’ve noticed that my AHI index increased. When I review my stats on the myAir app, the increase is isolated to the time period when I was coughing. Plus, It shows I had numerous central apneas during this period as well.

Does anyone know if coughing increases your AHI (and creates central apneas) ? Is this normal?

Thanks

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wiredgeorge +0 points · over 4 years ago Sleep Enthusiast

Somebody with more in depth knowledge of how the machines log apnea events can probably take a good guess if coughs are logged as AHI even though they may not be actual apnea events. I am guessing the higher numbers during coughing bouts are either AHI or mis-labled as the same but really don't know if these things are significant based on the temp nature of the issue (assume the dry cough goes away fairly soon). If I have a cough, I have never found any OTC med to have much of an effect.

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cargo1954 +0 points · over 4 years ago Original Poster

Thanks wiredgeorge. Unfortunately the cough is viral so not much will help get rid of it. OTC don’t work for me either. I have to let it take it’s course. What puzzles me is the increase in CA events while I’m clearly wide awake and conscious of my breathing. Strange. Perhaps it’s as you said, the way the machine is treating coughing spells.

Thanks for your input.

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cargo1954 +0 points · over 4 years ago Original Poster

Anybody else able to weigh in on this question?

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sleeptech +1 point · over 4 years ago Sleep Enthusiast

A CPAP can count a cough as an event. Also, as your settle down after the cough your respiration may be a little irregular for a minute or 2, which can also increase the AHI reported by your machine. It is very possible that your coughing is causing a rise in the AHI reported by your CPAP. A humidifier can help with the cough.

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