A CPAP machine is a specialized tool used to assist with breathing or replace spontaneous breathing. CPAP, or continuous positive airway pressure, is a mechanical form of ventilation. It is commonly used when sleep apnea, or the absence of breathing, is present. The CPAP hose is the part of the machine which delivers the pressured air to the patient.
The CPAP hose delivers a stream of pressurized or titrated air as prescribed by the physician. This flow of air, pressurized for each individual after a sleep study to determine the adequate amount, prevents airway obstruction. In other words, the pressurized air flow through the CPAP hose keeps the airway open.
The airway begins at the mouth and travels into the lungs. The CPAP hose is connected to a generator box on one end which supplies the mechanical energy to move the air. The hose is also connected to a nasal pillow or face mask.
In order for the CPAP hose to be an effective means to keep air flowing through the airways and into the lungs, a steady stream of air and a good seal on the nose or face are necessary. Additions to the CPAP machine to ensure proper positioning of the patient and the airway include such things as CPAP gel and pillows.
CPAP gel inserts are special inserts inside the mask to ensure a comfortable, secure fit. These inserts reduce the amount of pressure to the face in addition to limiting or stopping slippage. This is a valuable addition to the CPAP machine, since patients utilize this ventilation device when sleeping.
A CPAP pillow is an additional feature which aids in proper positioning of the airway, neck and spine for optimal results. It also reduces pressure areas on the skin from leaning on the CPAP hose. Pressure changes inside the hose are also better controlled with a CPAP pillow.
The CPAP hose requires unobstructed air flow to be an effective tool for breathing difficulties. By adding on some special features, it increases the machine’s effectiveness. The CPAP is useful in preventing or stopping such things as respiratory failure, breathing irregularities in premature babies and sleep apnea.
Respiratory failure results in an inadequate amount of oxygen, also called hypoxemia. Sleep apnea consists of pauses in breathing when sleeping, with one or more breaths being missed. A properly-fitted CPAP hose can regulate breathing and prevent further complications due to improper breathing.