A Concise History and Timeline Of The CPAP Machine And The Condition Sleep Apnea


The CPAP machines are used to help with the symptoms of a condition called Sleep Apnea, which is potentially quite serious. It has been revealed in recent times that there is over 17 million people in just the US that suffer with Sleep Apnea.

Here is a timeline of the condition and the research and treatments that were carried out.
The First Recordings of Sleep Apnea: Charles Dickens 1836 The Pickwick Papers was the first Novel by Dickens, and was released in instalments over 20 months. A sub character within the books called Joe, was often described as a “Fat Boy” who always eats and then falls asleep. Joe’s sleep disorder is the origin for the medical term ” Pickwickian Syndrome”, which lead to the subsequent Obstructive Sleep Apnea Syndrome. However “Pickwickian syndrome”, as a medical term wasn’t used for years later.

1956: The True effects of Sleep Apnea revealed In 1956, Dr. Burwell was treating various patients who often had congestive heart failure, extreme sleepiness or fatigue, as well as improper airflow to the lungs; or respiratory failure. Burwell told the story of an obese business man who whilst playing poker missed out on the chance to play his hand of three aces and two kings, reason: he fell asleep. This is the first time ” Pickwickian Syndrome” was recorded in a medical journal.

1965: Research in to sleep disorders begins In 1965, Dr. Gastaut with a team of French and German doctors start to conduct research around the condition Obstructive Sleep Apnea. Here whilst examining various patients they discovered the three different strains of Sleep Apnea. In 1969, Obstructive Sleep Apnea was started in the trachea (windpipe) and inserting breathing tubes.

The First CPAP Machine:1981 In 1981, the first CPAP machine was developed physician and Australian Colin Sullivan and his team, The idea was pretty basic and was inspired by the idea of reversing how a vacuum cleaner works, pushing air out instead of sucking in. They then applied this idea to a mask that the Sleep Apnea patient can wear as they sleep. This treatment wasn’t seen as a efficient procedure until at least the mid 80s.

Sleep Apnea and CPAP machines now: CPAP machines have come a long way since the old models, they are more comfortable to use and make less noise. Since Sullivan’s development and creation of the earlier CPAP machine, CPAP became the more popular and favoured way to treat Sleep Apnea. CPAP humidifiers and more cushions are now available to make using a CPAP a comfortable and easy experience. A big step from the basic, loud and big machines of the early 1980s.

Through the past century Sleep Apnea has developed from being a mystery in the medical world to something that is widely researched. Due to extensive research and Sleep societies throughout the world, Sleep Apnea is no longer ignored and there is always help at hand if you do have the condition.

A CPAP Humidifier is an instrument that increases moisture in the air. Used together with an airway pressure machine, such as a CPAP, Bilevel device or APAP, these humidifiers contain a water unit that keeps air dryness as low as possible. Generally the pressure air provided by an airway pressure machine can dry out the inside of the nose and mouth. This can feel uncomfortable at times as well as lead to coughs and nosebleeds. A humidifier can be attached to a CPAP Machine or it can be bought as a separate equipment piece – quite a number of them use water that’s heated and require a source of power but other types, described as passover humidifiersComputer Technology Articles, which use a hose to moisten the air.

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