Forum · First steps for Inspire Therapy coming up!

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[-] barbz +0 points · over 1 year ago

My ENT-sleep Doctor is actually in training to do this procedure. He feels I am a good candidate. I will be going across state to Tampa General. I have a daughter there... It will just be the Hello, let me see your studies, data.

Learned my insurance is a good one for approvals! I have to say I am both scared and excited. My first appointment is November 23rd.

Would love to hear POSITIVES COMMENTS from anyone who has gone through it. Do not need the scary ones... I will keep you up to date as I go through it all.

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[-] ConscientiousViridianSeaUrchin2630 +0 points · over 1 year ago

Had Inspire implant a couple years ago. Used c-pap for over 7 years. Now off c-pap, sleeping great, feel good and have lots of energy. Good luck Barb!

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[-] barbz +0 points · over 1 year ago

Just had my first interview. Doctor had n

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[-] barbz +0 points · over 1 year ago

Doctor had a family emergency so was rescheduled. I need to have a new sleep study done as in my last one, my head was raised about 35 degrees. Thanks for the positive reports! Sure hope I qualify.

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[-] barbz +0 points · about 1 year ago

Had my sleep study. Experienced the worse headache starting one hour after starting sleep. Heard myself whimpering throughout the night. Finally gave up at 4 am. WThe doctor who read the

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[-] barbz +0 points · about 1 year ago

Had my sleep study. First time I was flat to sleep in many years. Had an overwhelming headache start about one hour in. Heard myself whimpering all night. Finally called it quits at 4 am. I emphasized this strongly in post questionaire. The reading Doctor did not even take into consideration for my very poor sleep. Said I did not have sleep apnea. Realized later, my tongue was glued to the roof of my mouth...

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[-] DonnieG -1 point · over 1 year ago

I had mine done in Dec 14 and it was turned on in Jan 15. This is the best thing I've ever done, I sllep great every night.

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[-] barbz +0 points · 12 months ago

Could use some positive thoughts!

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[-] wiredgeorge +0 points · over 1 year ago Sleep Commentator

I had never heard of this alternative... I did some looking and it appears one downside might be trying to get your insurance company to sign off since this therapy has only recently become FDA approved. Are there any physical downsides? Discomfort with the implant, etc?

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[-] ResourcefulViridianPanther8723 +0 points · over 1 year ago

I have had the Inspire Therapy Implant since since mid 2011 and I can honestly say I have not had any physical downsides or discomfort with the implant. I did have a little swelling under my chin for a few days after surgery, but now the scar is almost invisible. I have a remote control that turns it on, gives me time to go to sleep before activating, them turn it off when I wake. It has been a perfect solution for me.

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[-] DanM +1 point · over 1 year ago Sleep Commentator

Hi @wiredgeorge. Inspire therapy is one of the surgical options that involves implanting a small device. You can read about hypoglossal nerve stimulation in the Research section on MyApnea.Org at https://myapnea.org/blog/new-frontiers-in-the-treatment-of-sleep-apnea-unilateral-hypoglossal-nerve-stimulation. Dr. Strohl wrote a very nice article. Thanks!

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[-] wiredgeorge +0 points · over 1 year ago Sleep Commentator

The procedure is written about on the website of the originating medical place. I got the gist. Dr. Strohl's article is well written but there were some statements on the inspiresleep.com website that caused me to consider the issue... they stated that, "However, studies show that approximately 50% of patients are unable to use or get consistent benefit from CPAP." Dr. Strohl didn't mention this in the article he wrote. Has a study been done to determine if 50 percent is the right number and how much of the unsuccessful therapy is due to poor pressure settings, poor education, poor mask fit, etc? Seems like PAP therapy has been around long enough to so that these issues and others of the sort, have been mitigated but reading the comments of others, it seems like they still haunt the PAP therapy process.

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[-] DanM +1 point · over 1 year ago Sleep Commentator

Hi @wiredgeorge. There have been numerous papers published on CPAP adherence. Here is a link to one article, and the first 12 references at the end of the article are in some way related to CPAP adherence. I would need to do some digging to sort out how much of the research relates to the various issues you mention. While PAP therapy has been around for a long time, the issues with leak, mask fit and some of the other factors that impact patient tolerance remain the same. Mask fit and mask pressure, speaking solely from personal experience of years working in sleep centers, seem to be the top 2 issues that cause problems for patients. Education is often key to correcting these problems, and we definitely need more education. Hopefully, MyApnea.Org can help with some of that! -Dan

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[-] ResourcefulViridianPanther8723 +0 points · over 1 year ago

I used a CPAP with great difficulty for several years. I have had the Inspire Implant for 4 1/2 years and it has been the best decision I have ever made as I do not stop breathing and wake up rested, and remain rested all day. Check it out at inspiresleep.com, you will be glad you did.

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[-] UnassumingOrangeRedCormorant9252 +0 points · over 1 year ago

Hi wiredgeorge,

I haven't seen any research links but on various medical websites, I see the 50% mentioned frequently. You are asking some good questions.

It seems on the cpaptalk.com forum, that many newbies have wide open pressure settings from 4 to 20 and then complain about not getting enough air. Hmm, I wonder why. All sarcasm aside, the fact that folks are given wide open settings without an adequate titration is a recipe for disaster.

Poor mask fit is another one. Many patients never get fitted correctly and get off to a horrible start, not realizing there are better options.

And the current system is very archaic. Get fitted at a DME or sleep doc's office with someone who is most likely clueless. And if the mask doesn't work, it is very hard to return it many times.

And there are people like me who have tried for 4 years to make pap therapy to no avail even though my settings are optimized. Don't know how many are in my situation but it is very frustrating.

Hope this helps.

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[-] BrainsNeedSleep +0 points · over 1 year ago

WiredGeorge, have you ever looked at your own sleep data via SleepyHead? I finally was able to do that sometime mid-2025 and it has made a huge difference, but I'm one who likes data to correlate to experience. I've had trouble with getting correct treatment for years, and mostly it has been other patients helping each other -- I'm one of the PEP people on here now precisely for that reason. Stay tuned!

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[-] BrainsNeedSleep +0 points · over 1 year ago

yeah, that would be "mid-2015", sorry.

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[-] Danmc +1 point · over 1 year ago

Hi barbz. I had was implanted in 2012 and it has changed my life. I sleep better at nights and I snored very loud and it is almost non-existent. I would do it all over again without hesitation.

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[-] DiligentBabyBlueCattle6536 +0 points · over 1 year ago

Do you mind telling us who the insurance company is?

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[-] IntuitivePrussianBlueEel1655 +1 point · over 1 year ago

I was diagnosed with Sleep Apnea about 13 years ago when I underwent surgery for a rotator cuff tear. The oxygen monitor showed I was not getting adequate oxygen during my recovery, which raised the alarm to my doctors. I am also a heart patient, so this was of considerable concern.

My ENT, Dr. Chris Thompson, Capital Otolaryngology, scheduled me for a sleep test which confirmed his diagnosis of sleep apnea. Over the years he’s performed surgery on my sinuses and removed my uvula in an attempt to correct the condition, and tried various oral devices, to no avail. I was prescribed a CPAP machine which was only partially effective as I could never find a mask that was comfortable enough to wear every night, and did not leak. If I didn’t use the CPAP, I snored loudly through the mouth, which kept my wife, a very light sleeper, awake. If I did use it, the noise of the machine and the mask leaking also kept her awake. In addition, I travel frequently and it was a pain to carry the CPAP through airport security and on the plane. Mostly I just left it home due to the inconvenience.

I continued to feel sleepy during the day and especially in the evenings. The only way I could manage was by continually drinking coffee or other caffeine drinks. It was hard to concentrate and I was lethargic. The minute I sat down on the couch in the evening I fell asleep.

When Inspire Therapy was approved by the FDA, Dr. Thompson attended a conference in Dallas, where he learned about the therapy. He immediately called me and told me he thought he had a solution. He explained that the Inspire device is a repurposed cardiac pacemaker that is implanted in the upper right chest. Two small wires are attached, one leads to the right side of the chest cavity to monitor breathing, and the other to the large nerve in the neck that controls the movement of the tongue. This nerve is stimulated as needed to move the tongue forward during sleep and open the airway to the throat. It is turned on by a small device similar to a television remote and only activated during sleep.

Dr. Thompson tested me and confirmed that I was a good candidate for Inspire. I had my surgery in October of 2014 at Westlake Medical Center in West Lake Hills (Austin suburb). The surgery took about 2 hours in the excellent West Lake facility. It was a walk in the park compared to any other surgery I’ve experienced. I was home by noon and never took a pain pill, not so much as a Tylenol. The only “recovery” was the healing of the 3 small (1-2 inch) scars. I was back at work the following day.

There is a 30-day waiting period for internal healing before the device is actually activated. This is a quick painless procedure done in the doctor’s office to determine the settings for the implanted device, which is a repurposed pacemaker, the kind that has been used by cardiac patients for decades. It worked perfectly for me the first night, but over the next few nights the impulse became too intense, so I made an appointment to have it adjusted. I believe that when the device was initially calibrated, my nerve had not completely healed and became more sensitive over time. In any case, the return appointment resolved the issue; the device was recalibrated to send a weaker impulse, and has worked perfectly since then. I had a follow up sleep test that showed I was sleeping soundly and my oxygen level had increased to a normal range. An added benefit is that my mouth breathing and snoring has stopped.

The effects of the therapy have been dramatic. In addition to resolving my snoring, I have much more energy, don’t feel sleepy all the time and don’t have to worry about the effect on my heart health. My cardiologist has been a strong supporter as well.

But the best part of all has been getting rid of my CPAP machine. I’m thinking of having it retrofitted as a boat anchor.

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[-] BrainsNeedSleep +0 points · over 1 year ago

For people with simple obstructive apnea, this may be one solution. However, many people have not only obstructions but also central apneas, where you aren't even trying to breathe, and this device would be completely inappropriate for such patients. Problem is, in my experience, lots of docs aren't paying much attention to the centrals if there are obstructions. This is why sites like this are so useful -- people can learn what might work, and what might not, and why. Thanks for sharing, glad you are also no longer damaging your brain!

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[-] BrainsNeedSleep +0 points · over 1 year ago

I should correct my above comment -- "this device would SEEM to be completely inappropriate..."

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[-] barbz +0 points · over 1 year ago

i have a Humana Medicare Advantage

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[-] Sherry +0 points · over 1 year ago

Barbz, I am very interested in your results! Please do share!

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[-] BrightElectricBlueCormorant9256 +1 point · about 1 year ago

It's been a year since my implant. Works like a charm. OSA 20 years. Wirth every penny. $35.00 Insurance pad for EVERYTHING else.

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[-] barbz +0 points · 12 months ago

Well, on Monday I will have my second appointment with Dr. Padyha. Scared and excited as I want this so bad. My Oracle backfired on me. Trying to use a nasal mask, Activa Lt. Comfortable, my numbers are below 2! BUT...my sinuses are as mad as he**! Taking OTC meds like Mucinex as well as using my oils.

Had a repeat sleep study last month that said I did not have apnea! The reading Doctor did not use my reactions for the worst night of my life. After 90 minutes a severe headache developed. I was aware a whimpering all night. Plus, my tongue was glued so tightly to the roof of my mouth there was no way my throat could close. By 4 am I gave up...could not continue the farce of trying to sleep.

Hope Dr. Padyha reads this as positive...wish I had a copy of my post study reactions. Did write him a a letter...before I even knew my results. It was my tongue that saved me.

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[-] barbz +1 point · 12 months ago

Well, it was a no go for me regarding Inspire Therapy. He did mention reshaping the sinus drainage areas. Don't know the exact terms. Does not do the balloon method. Guess me and my CPAP are just going to restart our relationship. Very negative now.

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[-] DanM +2 points · 12 months ago Sleep Commentator

Hi @barbz. I'm sorry to hear the Inspire Therapy is not an option for you. I know you were excited about the possibility. Hopefully, you and your CPAP can restart your relationship on better terms! Please keep us posted on how you're doing, and all the best! -Dan

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[-] barbz +0 points · 12 months ago

What has become clear, is that my sleep apnea issues have changed. It is now mainly my sinuses not accepting CPAP!

I know my main problems all these years were CAs (clear airway) events and hypopneas. My sinuses have fought against that air being forced in from day one!

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