Positive airway pressure (PAP) is one of the maximum common treatments for sleep apnea, a respiratory ailment that affects about 10% to 30percent1 of the population. The most commonplace PAP treatment is continuous tremendous airway stress (CPAP), but bilevel high-quality airway stress (BiPAP or BPAP) can be a higher option for some people.

While both forms of PAP therapy paintings in comparable methods, their variations mean that every has special advantages and downsides to recall. Because of this, the choice to switch PAP treatments have to constantly be made under the advice of your health care team.

What Is the Difference Between CPAP and BiPAP Machines?
CPAP and BiPAP machines are both types of superb airway strain therapy2, which makes use of compressed air to open and support the upper airway at some stage in sleep. A portable device generates the pressurized air and directs it to the consumer’s airway thru a hose and masks gadget. Both systems use similar mask, hoses, and different add-ons.

In general, CPAP machines have an adjustable stress placing that supplies among 4 to twenty cm H2O3 (a degree of air stress that stands for centimeters of water pressure) regardless of whether the person is breathing in or exhaling. The common setting is between eight to 10 cm H2O4. While CPAP machines have best one placing, some models now have a stress relief option that allows for gentler air stress at the exhale.

BiPAP machines have strain settings — inhalation wonderful airway pressure (IPAP) and exhalation fantastic airway strain (EPAP) — that permit for decrease strain tiers throughout exhalation. Depending at the BiPAP gadget’s settings, the switch among IPAP and EPAP can be timed or routinely based totally at the user’s respiration patterns. BiPAP machines have an average pressure variety of 4 to 30 cm H2O.

Both BiPAP and CPAP settings need to be determined in an in a single day sleep study, or polysomnography.


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There are transportable CPAP machines designed for journey, even as BiPAP machines are designed for at-home use. Because BiPAP machines require extra sensors and settings, they are typically more high priced than an in any other case similar CPAP device.

Different kinds of PAP remedy work better for unique conditions, although there may be some overlap5. CPAP therapy is commonly advocated for obstructive sleep apnea (OSA), and sleep professionals are not going to location someone with OSA on BiPAP except they can not tolerate CPAP treatment. While a few coverage companies cover both CPAP and BiPAP for OSA, those who do typically require proof that CPAP treatment is insufficient or not tolerated earlier than reimbursing for a BiPAP machine. BiPAP remedy is ordinarily used to deal with significant sleep apnea (CSA), in addition to coronary heart, lung, and neurological problems that require based airway guide during sleep.

Both CPAP and BiPAP machines are to be had with various add-ons, both included and after-market. The maximum not unusual are information series capabilities and weather manipulate functions like humidifiers and heated tubing.

Typical Cost $500-$1000 $1,seven hundred-$3,000
Pressure Levels 1 2
Typical Pressure Range 4 to 20 cm H2O four to 30 cm H2O
Insurance Coverage May be blanketed May be included if CPAP therapy fails or is contraindicated
CPAP Basics
A continuous tremendous airway pressure (CPAP) device directs pressurized air — usually set between four and 20 cm H2O — into a person’s airway6 whilst they sleep. This pressure maintains air passages open and guarantees the person can breathe properly, permitting them to keep away from the pauses in breathing (or apneas) which can be the primary symptom of sleep apnea.

CPAP machines continuously pump air at one pressure placing as opposed to various in stress between the inhale and exhale, that can purpose some people to feel as though they can’t exhale well or that they are choking. Most users adjust to CPAP exceedingly speedy, at the same time as others locate BiPAP less complicated to tolerate.

Unlike BiPAP machines, CPAP machines are to be had in quite a number sizes. The most not unusual type is supposed to be used at home and is slightly smaller than a shoebox, at the same time as travel versions may be small enough to suit inside the palm of your hand. Travel fashions sometimes have backup batteries to be used while camping, and FAA-approved models are to be had to be used on planes.

BiPAP Basics
Bilevel tremendous airway stress machines have distinct air stress settings for inhalation (IPAP) and exhalation (EPAP). The EPAP putting is commonly considerably lighter than the IPAP putting, permitting users to breathe more clearly and now not sense as even though they’re fighting in opposition to the system after they exhale. Most BiPAP machines have a number of about four to 30 cm H2O.

BiPAP machines have up to a few settings for the switch between IPAP and EPAP.

Spontaneous: Spontaneous switching robotically senses the person’s respiration sample and switches between the 2 pressure ranges once they evidently inhale and exhale. The majority of BiPAP customers depend upon this putting, and it is preferred for BiPAP devices.
Timed: Timed switching permits customers to program how long each IPAP and EPAP section have to final. This guarantees customers take the perfect range of breaths consistent with minute and might feature much like a ventilator.
Spontaneous/timed: This setting is often spontaneous, following the user’s herbal breathing styles. On this setting, timed switching activates whilst the device senses that the user has dropped below a fixed number of breaths in step with minute.
Additionally, BiPAP machines may be fixed or auto-adjusting.

Fixed: The IPAP and EPAP settings of a hard and fast BiPAP device are pre-set and do now not alternate throughout the night time.
Auto-adjusting: An car-adjusting BiPAP system has a variety set for each IPAP and EPAP. This lets in the device to regulate automatically at some point of the night in response to how the sleeper is respiratory.

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