If you suffer from sleep apnea, there are a variety of methods you can try to reduce your symptoms and live a happier and healthier life. One central sleep apnea treatment you and your doctor may want to consider is adaptive servo ventilation. This new sleep apnea device is showing positive results for patients with central sleep apnea and other sleeping disorders. Gain a better understanding of adaptive servo ventilation and how it works, so that you can decide whether it’s the right sleep apnea treatment for you.
Created in 1998, Adaptive Servo Ventilation (ASV) is a non-invasive method for treating central sleep apnea and other conditions such as complex sleep apnea, mixed sleep apnea, and Cheyne-Stokes. Adaptive servo ventilation is a relatively new central sleep apnea treatment that continuously monitors the breathing status of patients. Considered to be a form of positive airway pressure therapy (PAP), adaptive servo ventilation adjusts pressure delivery based on the detection of pauses, or apneas, in breathing during sleep.
The sleep apnea device used with adaptive servo ventilation works by using a pressure window and computer algorithms. This pressure window is set to respond to feedback from the user which allows it to change and adjust throughout the night. Adaptive servo ventilation continuously adjusts pressure to prompt breathing when needed (based on the patient’s breathing patterns). This sleep apnea device resembles CPAP machines and uses the same masks, hoses, and attachments.
This central sleep apnea treatment is distinctive because of its ability to rapidly stabilize breathing patterns and arterial blood gases, as well as minimize discomfort and arousals often associated with bilevel treatment. All of these positive outcomes are made possible by the method in which adaptive servo ventilation personalizes pressure ventilation.
Along with adaptive servo ventilation, there are two other widely used treatments for sleep apnea. CPAP and BiPAP therapy are the most popular therapies that doctors recommend for patients suffering from different forms of sleep apnea. While CPAP and BiPAP are similar to adaptive servo ventilation, this central sleep apnea treatment is unique and should only be prescribed to certain patients.
The most obvious difference between adaptive servo ventilation and CPAP and BiPAP is pressure related. While CPAP provides one continuous pressure and BiPAP provides two pressures (on inhale and exhale), adaptive servo ventilation adjusts the pressure based on an algorithm. Because of this adjustment setting, there is no consistent number of pressures applied to this central sleep apnea treatment. It changes amongst each user and their breathing patterns.
In addition to pressure differences, you should also be aware of the typical doctor recommendations that come with using adaptive servo ventilation. While a visit to your doctor is the only way to know for sure which treatment is best for you, it has been found that adaptive servo ventilation is usually considered a last resort option for sleep apnea patients.
CPAP and BiPAP therapy are well-known treatments for sleep apnea and many people try these methods to start. CPAP is normally tried first, then BiPAP, and adaptive servo ventilation may come next. One of the main reasons for this consequential process is the patient’s comfort level with each therapy’s pressure method. CPAP’s pressure is continuous, BiPAP’s pressure involves two pressures (inhaling and exhaling), and adaptive servo ventilation consists of adjusted pressures. Trying each type of therapy is the only way to discover which is the most successful and comfortable for you.
The modern technology used with adaptive servo ventilation is quite extraordinary and opens the door for improved sleep apnea treatment. If you suffer from any form of sleep apnea, consult with your doctor to get a proper diagnosis and from there, consider the different forms of sleep apnea therapy that may work best for you.
© 2021 American Sleep Association.