File this one under non-scale victory that actually does reduce my weight…of my travel bags.
Several weeks ago, I had an appointment with my pulmonologist to follow up on my use of CPAP. It had been two years since I saw him and, well, a lot changed since he saw me last.
He commissioned another sleep study to see how my sleep apnea was progressing. Unlike the last one, I got to do this one at home. The hardest part was picking a week that I was going to be home to actually do it.
A couple weeks after I did the study, I got a phone call from my pulmonologist. On a weekend no less. He told me that while I still met the diagnostic criteria for apnea, I had fewer events per hour than previously (6 events versus 8), and I could try not using CPAP for a while and see how I did. He suggested also monitoring my blood pressure to ensure my blood pressure did not increase as a result.
So I tried it. While it's difficult to totally judge sleep quality when you're constantly changing timezones, I think I can say: going off CPAP did not make a ton of difference. My sleep quality seems relatively unchanged.
Further, my blood pressure seems to be trending lower rather than higher.
I just sent a note to the doctor with the results of my self-experiment. I informed him that, given these results, that I am planning to discontinue CPAP and will continue to monitor and use CPAP again if needed. He agreed with my strategy.
Which means my travels will be that much lighter now that I won't have to carry a CPAP with me everywhere I go. Sure, the airlines treat it as a "free" carryon, but it's still a hassle, especially going through some foreign airports.