How Nasal EPAP Works
Nasal Expiratory Positive Airway Pressure (EPAP) is an innovative treatment for obstructive sleep apnoea (OSA). The device is a small valve with a hypoallergenic adhesive externally attached to the patient’s nostrils for a night’s use.
Here at CPAP Victoria, we sell EPAP devices in the form of Provent. In recent clinical studies, Provent Therapy demonstrated significant improvement across all levels of OSA severity and reduced snoring and excessive daytime sleepiness.
Read on to learn more about EPAP...
What is EPAP?
The one-way valve permits airflow into the airways as the patient inhales, but resists airflow when the patient breathes out. During exhalation, the air is directed to a small opening which increases the resistance. The increased resistance during exhalation creates EPAP that is maintained until the user’s next inhalation. This process induces positive airway pressure in the upper airway upon exhalation and in effect prevents airway collapse as it creates a Positive End Expiratory Pressure (PEEP).
Points to Consider
Nasal EPAP works by making it hard for the OSA patient to breathe out. The pressure is created by harnessing the force of the user’s own breath. The resistance created during exhalation produces light pressure in the user’s airway thus assisting in keeping the airway open.
The main difference between CPAP and EPAP is that CPAP creates positive pressure during inhalation and exhalation whereas EPAP creates positive pressure during exhalation only. Nasal EPAP does not force air into a patient’s throat which can cause discomfort and stomach pain to some users. EPAP, in effect, is a gentler and natural alternative to CPAP.
As with other breathing aids, it takes time to get used to nasal EPAP. If a user wakes up and feels uncomfortable, opening the mouth alleviates the discomfort. If not, taking off the device is the next option.
Who can use Nasal EPAP?
A person must be diagnosed with OSA by a qualified practitioner before nasal EPAP is recommended. The severity of OSA should be determined before proper treatment is prescribed. Tests are done in proper setups such as in a polysomnography laboratory. After the proper diagnosis and evaluation, nasal EPAP may be recommended for patients with:
• mild to severe OSA who are non-compliant with CPAP
• newly diagnosed patients with mild to moderate OSA and has no co-morbidities
• OSA patients who are CPAP compliant but looking for alternative therapy
How to attach the Nasal EPAP device
Attaching the device is quite simple. A patient must first see to it that his face is clean and dry before attaching the nasal EPAP device.
Next he should grasp the small tab on the device and peel off the backing. To properly align the plastic portion of the nasal EPAP device, the patient should stand in front of a mirror to ensure proper placement of the device’s plastic portion in his nostrils.
To properly apply pressure on the adhesive, it is best if the patient drops his upper lip as if shaving. Gently applying and pressing down on the adhesive creates a seal to ensure there is no air leak. Testing for leaks is done by covering the oval mesh on both nostrils and gently exhaling through the nose to ensure that no air escapes through the adhesives.
Studies have shown that nasal EPAP therapy decreases apneas, improves quality of sleep, reduces daytime sleepiness and even reduces snoring.
If you have been diagnosed with OSA and would like a treatment option other than cpap devices, a nasal EPAP device could be suitable for you... check out our range of EPAP devices here. We recommend Provent Therapy.
CPAP Victoria can help you. We have the qualification, experience and expertise to diagnose and present treatment options for your sleeping disorder.
Give us a call NOW at 1300 750 006 or pop into one of our CPAP clinics Victoria . We are located in Melbourne, Wantirna and Frankston.