A few comments:
Your sleep study must have actually been a titration test. Does the test result specify the type of apnea events your were having at the various pressure levels tried? In some people the central apnea or clear airway events tends to rise with higher pressures. That could account for why the AHI (which is the total) went up with the 12 and 14 cm pressures. However, a CPAP uses pressure to treat apnea, and pressure does not reduce or prevent central apnea because the airway is already open. Normally when a titration test is done they select the lowest pressure that reduces the obstructive apnea while avoiding the higher pressures if they induce central apnea. In any case I think you are correct in being suspicious about the selection of the higher pressure.
I am not sure what restrictions you are on with your insurance company, but I would suggest you try to get your primary care doctor to prescribe an Auto CPAP or APAP instead of a fixed pressure CPAP. That way, if you do not need the higher pressures the machine will not go there, and you will still be in compliance. Future sleep studies should also be unnecessary as the machine will auto adjust. And they really do not cost that much more than a fixed pressure machine at least in Canada and the US. And a good auto CPAP will not increase pressure if central apnea events are detected. It will only identify and count them, but not try to stop them.
Again if you have any control and are successful in getting a prescription for an APAP, I would recommend the ResMed AirSense 10 AutoSet for Her machine as the first choice (even if you are male). It has an additional optional setting that works well in people needing pressures up to the 12 cm range. Second choice would be a Dreamstation Auto. If you could get your doctor to specify the ResMed For Her machine in the prescription, it should make dealing with the DME easier...
Thanks for the advice. I will ask about an auto CPAP. And I’ll see if my doctor will ask for that particular one.
I'd change my machine settings myself, watch my numbers and never mention anything about it. At least that's what I do. No one notices, they just note the hours I use the machine and the AHI.
Yes, I do the same. However, one has to be careful about the machine you get for treatment. If you are going to monitor your own results it works much better with an Auto CPAP that has the capability to record detailed data that can be read by SleepyHead. Some machines are just dumb bricks that supply a fixed pressure and record no detailed data. You can't do anything with that except to keep going back for a titration test to determine if your pressure requirements have changed. And unless you have good insurance to pay for that it can be a big Cha Ching!
I use almost entirely ResMed, Respironics and Fisher & Paykel machines, which together make up over 90% of the global market (last I heard anyway), although I do occasionally come across one of the other companies. Certainly with those 3 brands their standard fixed pressure CPAPs record just as much data as their auto counterparts. In fact I have not come across an auto which records more data than its fixed pressure equivalent, although some companies have released dumbed down versions of their machines in the past which record less data. Also, some of the lesser brands don't record as much, so if you're not getting one of the big 3 it's looking into their data reporting capability. However, it's not necessary to get an auto CPAP just to get the best data recording.