Irish Sleep Apnoea Trust / Iontaobhas Apnoea Codlata na hÉireann.  The Irish Sleep Apnoea Trust promotes awareness, understanding and treatment of Sleep Apnoea through education, research and fund raising.    




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Volume 1, Issue 2

Page 3

ISAT Newsletter - Autumn 2001

Dublin Branch Successfully Set Up

At a meeting of ISAT members living in the Eastern Regional Health Authority area (Counties Dublin, Wicklow & Kildare) on August 27th last held in The Aisling Hotel, the first of ISAT's Regional Committees was successfully set up.  The meeting was chaired by the ISAT CEO.

The meeting was then opened to the floor which brought about some interesting questions mainly in the area of compliance with CPAP (Continuous Positive Airway Pressure), dealing with air leaks, frequency of return visits to Sleep Specialists and some good and bad reports on experiences with CPAP suppliers, Health Service Executive (HSE) [ ]s and employers.
Air leaks are certainly a major problem with Sleep Apnoea sufferers. It was pointed out that tightening the headgear is not the answer, as it will only lead to pressure marks (and possibly cuts) on the patient's face and will lead to a worsening of the leak and possibly damage to both the headgear and the mask. The most reliable way of dealing with leaks is to allow the 'bubble' of the mask inflate with air to allow the creation of a seal between the silicone and face. Headgear should be left 'comfortable' (not too tight and not too loose). Regular cleaning of the mask will help this as it will remove facial oils which adhere to the mask. Regular maintenance and/or replacement of the interface components helps enormously.
Sleep Specialists will usually see patients approx. one month after commencement of CPAP treatment, and unless otherwise advised by the Specialist, the onus is really on the patient to refer back to the Sleep Clinic on a regular basis, usually annually.
Reports on dealings with various bodies were mixed and confirmed reports already received via our questionnaire. These are dealt with elsewhere in this issue.

Jim Whelan, Chairman of the new ERHA Committee of ISAT

There was apologies from the ISAT Chairman Larry Maginn, who was represented by the Hon. Treasurer Dan Smyth, and was attended by over forty members with apologies from many more.
Guest speakers were Ms. Valerie Swan (Sleep Nurse Specialist, St. Vincent's University Hospital) and Ms. Geraldine Lawless (Chief Respiratory Technician, St. Vincent's University Hospital).
Talks centred round some of the problems faced by Sleep Laboratories in dealing with the ever increasing numbers of patients, particularly in the area of equipment maintenance. The main problem was in keeping the 'interface' or mask and 'headgear' in good condition through regular cleaning with soapy water. It was pointed out that masks do not last forever and that as they get  more worn there is a greater likelihood of leaks. Headgear will lose elasticity over a period of time and become less effective, again leading to leaks. It was also mentioned that there is a much larger range of equipment available now than ever before.

Pictured at the inaugural meeting of the ERHA Area Committee. (L to R) Arthur O'Hara, Larry Maginn, Attracta Peden, Jim Whelan (Chairman), Dermot Dolan, Dominic O'Callaghan, Don Kelly.



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