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colojd
Wednesday, November 1, 2006, 8:37pm Report to Moderator Report to Moderator

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Hi, I'm hoping to get some good advice and support here.

In early October I went for my physical. I am in relatively good condition except have been taking blood pressure medication for about a year. A very stressful job probably lead to this condition and weight gain. I admit that during this time, was not following the diet carefully.

I am finally almost totally out of this job, and will have more time to concentrate on my health and well being.

My doctor said that my blood profile showed lower oxygen readings that she would like to see and thought maybe sleep apnea. I just wrote her a note with my thoughts on this because my husband has cluster migraines during late summer and early fall and he had an oxygen accumulator in the room. Since he would run this up to several times a night, I honestly think this was lowering the available oxygen in the room.

She wants me to go for a sleep study and maybe because I am being stubborn about this, I truly think that with weight loss and less stress, that this problem should disappear. I have asked her to reconsider this order. The people from the sleep study place are pretty pushy and keep calling.

I would like to hear from others who maybe had this situation and how you handled it without going through tests and who knows what else. I want to get more compliant on the diet and just get in better overall health. I just wrote my doctor so no response yet but any and all comments and support will be appreciate.

Thanks,
Joyce
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Elizabeth
Wednesday, November 1, 2006, 8:44pm Report to Moderator Report to Moderator

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Sleep study??  Sounds like they need guinea pigs for a study they are doing--you might check whether you would be "contributing to science."  I'm not against sleep studies, and it may be just the right thing, but this does sound a bit like early overkill.
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Melissa_J
Wednesday, November 1, 2006, 8:46pm Report to Moderator Report to Moderator

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Weight loss certainly helps with sleep apnea, but if it is causing you health problems then it's not something you should take lightly.  I believe it can cause high blood pressure, and can do real damage in many ways.  I'd say the two options are to put it off for a month or two and do everything right to help the apnea and remedy the situation, then get tested...or get tested right away so you know what you're dealing with.

I'm a bit biased as I know 3 people who waited years to get the study, only to find out they had it all along...then felt much better after using the breathing machine at night.  My best friend's father died from complications of sleep apnea, it somehow damaged his kidneys and organs.  It can also cause neurological problems.  The sooner you get treatment the better, and maybe it can help make the blood pressure meds unnecessary, with a less internally intrusive treatment.


Type O+ blogger, secretor afterall. Gluten intolerant. With two gluten intolerant sons:  A+ Secretor 10 yo (also fructose intolerant and slightly egg allergic), and  O- 7yo.
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colojd
Wednesday, November 1, 2006, 9:03pm Report to Moderator Report to Moderator

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Thanks for both of your comments. I do understand that sleep apnea might cause problems, but I guess in my case, since I had not had this show up on a blood test before, I just felt that there might be simpler solutions.

My Dad is 86 and has been a heavy snorer all of his life and the only time he had been in the hospital was last May when she slipped on wet grass and broke some bones in his hip.  They also told my husband they thought he might have apnea - sent over a little machine that was on his finger at night. They said that yes, he seemed to have it to a degree but his doctor has done nothing further.

I respect modern medicine but it seems like there sometimes are things that are almost fads and the sleep apnea thing seems to almost be like that. It seems not long ago, the doctors all said that women in menopause should eat as much soy as they could to help stave off hot flashes and such. I just read a couple of findings the other day that said now they think it did relatively little. I am not being cynical or critical but think that sometimes as Elizabeth suggested, there are things that they want to study and they get their information not by volunteers but by requiring patients to do certain studies.

I did fully explain the situation to my doctor and will see what she says. I also am going to start a yoga class on Saturday. I did yoga a while back when it was not as popular and just loved it and being a B I am sure that it will help me overall as well.
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rustyc
Thursday, November 2, 2006, 2:15pm Report to Moderator Report to Moderator

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Sleep studies are not a study in the normal sense.  You sleep in a special room and are monitored throughout the night to see what your sleeping pattern is.  Sleep apnea means you stop breathing during the night and it needs attention.  Better to find out from the study that you don't really have a problem than to stop breathing for just too long!
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colojd
Thursday, November 2, 2006, 2:22pm Report to Moderator Report to Moderator

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The thing is that the doctor said that maybe I had this because she saw slightly lowered oxygen levels in my blood. As I tried to explain above, my husband has cluster migraine headaches and was using an "oxygen accumulator" machine in our room. This pulls the oxygen out of the air and concentrates it into the machine and dispenses oxygen by mask. After I had been to the doctor, my husband and I talked about this maybe being the cause since I have not had this show up before on any blood test, plus he was using it up to three times a night when he was getting headache attacks. I wrote this out for my doctor and mailed it off to her yesterday so she would take this into consideration.

What I asked is that she do another blood test maybe by end of December to see if things are normalized and then go from there.
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Colleen
Thursday, November 2, 2006, 6:17pm Report to Moderator Report to Moderator

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I can see you wanting to have another blood test.  How long has the machine been OUT of your bedroom?

I have sleep apnea and go for a sleep study every year.  It's one night out of the year to save my life.  Not every year, but this year, the results show that I need to have my air pressure increased.  That's after a year of being fairly good on BTD, shedding almost 50 pounds and increasing my physical activity.  You just never know what is causing you to apnea but I sure am glad I no longer have signs of narcalepsy ... falling asleep at stop lights.

Thanks for posting this subject ... I just realized that although I'm still suffering with some form of lack of energy I am no longer having daytime drooziness ( now if only I could remember how to spell it )


A New Sponge on the Block ... so much to learn.
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colojd
Thursday, November 2, 2006, 7:38pm Report to Moderator Report to Moderator

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Hi Colleen:
thanks for your comments. The machine was actually just picked up today. My husband had not used it for about 10 days so his doctor OK'd that it be picked up.

I think since I have had no other symptoms of apnea (headaches, need to sleep during the day, etc) that I am hoping that it was just this oddity. My doctor is pretty reasonable and I think doing another blood test should tell us more, but I want at least a shot at losing weight and getting myself back on track which might take a month or two. I am starting yoga classes and I am sure, since I have had such good luck in the past with yoga, that this will help me overall.

I did read an article a few days ago that said the majority of apnea is eliminated with weight loss so this is an immediate goal.

I guess on thing that bothered me is that it seems that so many things come around and we are told out of fear that we must take tests and submit to other things to save our lives. Remember that not that long ago, everyone was told that they had to use margarine as a healthy alternative to other fats, now we are all aware of the word "trans fats" because these alternatives were actually worse than eating small amounts of natural fats. We were told that eggs should not be eaten, now they should be because they had more nutrients than detriments. Just a short time ago, a friend of ours who is a nurse practioner said that Atkins was the healtiest diet and was pushing people to take grape seed extract. She finally said she could not keep on Atkins, gained weight back and is not pushing the grape seed extract anymore.

I guess my point is, many of these tests and claims of things are really untested. They assume a factor and then have patients submit to tests, surgery, devices and such and then later say, well that wasn't it after all.

Since I have never had low blood oxygen before, that was why I thought other outside factors were the reason, and that a retest seemed a more sensible route. I guess I will let you know what my doctor thinks!

Thanks,
Joyce
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colojd
Wednesday, November 8, 2006, 2:08pm Report to Moderator Report to Moderator

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Not to go on with this, but my doctor finally called me back and said she would agree to have my blood retest done somewhere around early February.

In the meantime, I have gotten some very interesting information from friends and relatives. One good article I just read was called "Sleep Apnea Does Not Cause Cardiovascular Disease" by a Dr. John Standling. He wrote the article for the American Journal of Repiratory and Critical Care Medicine. It was very helpful and made me feel better about all of this. Apparently since the sleep apnea subject has come up, so much more information has come forward and not a lot of doctors are clued in to the newer findings.

Also, in talking with my husband, he reminded me that he had the same order to do a sleep study earlier this year. Went to the clinic, hooked him up to wires and cables and he said it was a pain and how could you properly rest that way? He spent the night there, they said "yeah, you have apnea now take home this plastic mask and wear it to bed". He did so and then they said his results needed more tests, so they sent a device home which was a monitor with a finger clamp and he wore it when sleeping for a night or two. They said, yeah, you probably have apnea and nothing further was done! All of that, and a hefty bill later. So I am wondering about all of this and it seems that some are still picking around at this topic and since people won't line up voluntarily to do a study, they get the labs and doctors to push these tests. They can get their research data at the expense of the patient and their insurance company.

I do not fit the profile of one who would have apnea. I am not a smoker and never have been. I rarely consume caffeine. I am not a drinker. Only thing that does fit is that I am carrying around more weight than I should but I am working on that.

So my doctor has agreed if I am working on weight loss, that she will then just re-check my blood results in about three months and I just feel confident that things will be normal. I do have to wonder if the blood test lab and the sleep study lab are somehow affiliated and maybe there has been a big "increase" in the low blood oxygen levels, if you know what I mean!
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Lola
Wednesday, November 8, 2006, 3:11pm Report to Moderator Report to Moderator

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colojd,
here s an interesting testimonial on sleep apnea:
http://www.dadamo.com/forum/archivea/config.pl?read=90168


''Just follow the book, don't look for magic fixes to get you off the hook. Do the work.'' Dr.D.'98
DNA mt/Haplo H; Y-chrom/J2(M172);ISTJ
The harder you are on yourself, the easier life will be on you!
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colojd
Wednesday, November 8, 2006, 3:39pm Report to Moderator Report to Moderator

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Thanks for that link Lola. I have not had the problem of being jolted awake to gasp for air, and also do not have other symptoms such as morning headache. That is why I thought that jumping to the conclusion something was sleep apnea was maybe hasty.

I had not been following the BTD closely in the months prior to my blood test - the company my husband and I worked for was being shut down and there were long hours and quite frankly eating lunch on the run or less than healthy choices. Now that I am out of that job, I hope to see bigger improvements. I just began doing aerobics again today, also doing yoga stretches and walking most everyday. I am committed to improving me!

Just as an aside on my blood test. I am not a squeemish person. Needles and blood do not bother me very much however have to tell you about this blood draw. The morning I went in, the person drawing the blood had a hard time finding my vein. I almost think she was a beginner. She put the needle in and then took it out. Repeated that. Then she put the needle in and (sorry about this) began probing for the vein with the needle under my skin. It was not pleasant. She tried the other arm and no luck. Finally gave me to another lady who saw all of the "attempts" and was trying to try again without hurting me further. I have pretty good veins in my hands, so she ended up taking it from there. I am sure at one point I was not breathing easy during these attempts! When I came home, I had a bandage in the crook of one arm, in the other arm and on the top of one hand! My son said "good grief, what did they do to you!!". Not a good experience!!
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Lola
Wednesday, November 8, 2006, 3:47pm Report to Moderator Report to Moderator

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gosh!! that sure wasn t your lucky day!!!

sorry to hear you had to go through a simple procedure, in such a manner!
incompetence can really hurt, right? lol


''Just follow the book, don't look for magic fixes to get you off the hook. Do the work.'' Dr.D.'98
DNA mt/Haplo H; Y-chrom/J2(M172);ISTJ
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colojd
Wednesday, November 8, 2006, 3:51pm Report to Moderator Report to Moderator

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Yes! It made me wonder if I was holding my breath and that had something to do with the oxygen levels!

The first technician finally said "boy your hands are clammy" so I think she finally figured out that I was not comfortable and gave up. I have never fainted but that was really trying!
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linnsmama
Wednesday, November 8, 2006, 4:19pm Report to Moderator Report to Moderator
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My oxygen levels are low, too, but it's because I live at 6400 feet above sea level.  My doctor is several thousand feet lower but thankfully pays attention to such details so she wasn't concerned.

Robin
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colojd
Wednesday, November 8, 2006, 4:39pm Report to Moderator Report to Moderator

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Robin,
I thought that was a good point for me as well. We lived for about 20 years in the Vail, Colorado area and there was never a mention of this before when I had a blood test.  I am sure that they took it into account.

We now live in a suburb of Denver, so are still at about 5,280 ft elevation. When my doctor mentioned it, she said that the lab reported that the levels were as if someone was "living at high altitudes". I remember thinking, well we are!  It is just a little strange and I almost wonder if the blood test lab and the sleep study lab are owned by the same company - maybe drumming up a little business for the other side!
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claydaddy
Friday, November 10, 2006, 11:32pm Report to Moderator Report to Moderator
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Quoted from colojd
I do not fit the profile of one who would have apnea. I am not a smoker and never have been. I rarely consume caffeine. I am not a drinker. Only thing that does fit is that I am carrying around more weight than I should but I am working on that.

Hi! colojd, I don't fit the profile either, don't smoke, drink, never did, and drank very little coffee but I do have sleep apnea. I am 25 or 30 lbs. over weight and I too am working on that with the help of the BTD.. Been on a CPAP machine about 10 yrs now.  I've had only one sleep study at a hospital and one at home when we moved to Tn. 5 years ago.  It helps my quality of sleep tremendously.  I seldom, if ever feel, 'wide eyed and bushy-tailed' on wakening but it is a lot worse if I don't use my cpap mach.  My wife, Diann, sleeps better also because I'm no longer jumping and gasping for air like I used to.  She said I use to scare her due to the length of time I would hold my breath.   Your husband could probably tell if you have apnea or not just by observing your sleep pattern for a while.  It will be very noticeable.  I do wish you the best of luck in your quest for an answer here.  clay

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colojd
Saturday, November 11, 2006, 2:11pm Report to Moderator Report to Moderator

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Thanks for your note. I have never awakened gasping for air and my husband has never observed any other apnea type symptoms, so I think this may not be what the doctor is assuming.

I did hear that just losing about 10% of your weight can make it go away. Both my husband and I are working on losing weight. I did talk to my doctor after posting this originally. She agreed that I can do a blood test again in about 3 months to see if the oxygen levels have improved and by that time, I hope to have lost at least 20 lbs.

I am not disputing that real apnea may cause problems but apparently there has been so much more now since the original studies that doctors can't just say "you have apnea and it will cause this".  there were probably many people who had apnea, never knew it, and lived to old age, so you have to wonder. I think maybe with the rise in weight problems in this country, it has maybe caused this problem, but I just have a hunch that maybe in another few years, they will come out with more enlightened findings and better solutions and maybe a simple cure.
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colojd
Saturday, November 11, 2006, 2:16pm Report to Moderator Report to Moderator

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Just wanted to also add that what they say is apnea may also be sinus and other congestion due to grain allergies. I know I had read that if someone had a loud snoring problem, it could be wheat and other type allergies. My husband had always been a fairly loud snorer. When he consumes wheat, I notice that his snoring gets worse. Not everyone who snores has apnea, but again I think if they would just take time to check this out, they would find more correlations.

Also, as I posted above, I live in the Denver, CO area, so am at higher elevations. It puzzled me when the doctor commented that my blood oxygen level was same as someone living at higher elevations. She was pretty distracted that day - a former doctor with their group had passed away and she was in and out of the room during my appointment, so I also think she just was not thinking clearly that day.

In any event, I do strongly feel that with my weight loss plan and with increased aerobics, that my blood profile will improve.
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claydaddy
Saturday, November 11, 2006, 4:00pm Report to Moderator Report to Moderator
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Just wanted to comment on the correlation between apnea and grain allergies, I didn't know this, very interesting.  Grains are an avoid for typO's.  I will be watching this very close going forward.  Have  been on the BTD less than a month.  Thanks for your reply.    clay
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colojd
Saturday, November 11, 2006, 4:08pm Report to Moderator Report to Moderator

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Clay,
My husband is Italian, so his growing up "comfort food" always included white pasta. We began eating way less of it when all of the talk about refined foods being bad came about. Before I strictly followed the BTD, I was taking things like Lean Cuisine meals to work with me, many of which are white pasta or white rice based, and always wondering why I was not losing weight, that the meals did not satisfy me, etc. That was when they were promoting pasta as a good thing to eat because it was "low fat".  Same as when they told us to eat margarine instead of butter and now say that was a mistake because most margarine was made with trans fats.

I had read, probably on this forum, that if you have an O who snores, try less or no wheat. We did and I have to say in a very short time (within a week) I noticed his snoring going to almost nothing. We do  avoid refined wheat. Our type B son has real sensitivity to wheat, which took me a long time to figure out, so we mostly use spelt flour in cooking and baking and my husband is fine with that.

This reminds me to go to the TypeBase and read up on which grains he should be eating. I know a lot of people say they never eat grains, but I also know that the unrefined and more natural form are a great source of many important minerals.  
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Melissa_J
Sunday, November 12, 2006, 5:52am Report to Moderator Report to Moderator

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Sounds like you and your doctor are both listening to each other and taking each other seriously, so that is a good start.  If the blood test is the only indicator that you could have it, then it makes sense to me that you repeat the test (with an experienced phlebotomist next time, for your own sake)

My type A snores less now that he has given up milk.

By brother was waking about every 90 seconds to breath, after some seconds without being able to breath at all, without even realizing it.  


Type O+ blogger, secretor afterall. Gluten intolerant. With two gluten intolerant sons:  A+ Secretor 10 yo (also fructose intolerant and slightly egg allergic), and  O- 7yo.
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