I have always said “Show me a pillow and I will show you sleep.” However, little did I realize that my constant sleepiness was due to sleep apnea. Since my late 20’s, if I did something strenuous, I needed a sleep afterwards. Otherwise, I was operable at work and play until I settled down for the day.
At first, when my doctor suggested that I had this ailment, I laughed. At 38, I was always able to do my job well, multi-task, and look after my children before feeling completely sleep deprived. To appease him, I went to take a sleep test. The first test proved that I had a mild form of sleep apnea but I never heard anything else after my doctor informed me of this. Until January 2012.
My Sleep Apnea Diagnosis Adventure.
My doctor’s office called and said that if I don’t take care of this sleep apnea they will have no other option but to contact the Ministry of Transportation. Confused and befuddled, I immediately booked another appointment which resulted in yet another initial sleep study. I was given a follow up appointment for 6 months later but was asked to return days later for a secondary test with the machine.
I felt no different with the machine and it was a bloody nuisance all night.
I was on my way to my follow up when I received a phone call from the sleep clinic stating that I was an hour late. Having the paper in hand, I knew this wasn’t the case. She informed me that the appointment had to be postponed and would call me back. I never heard from her again. At that time, I was feeling great and I forgot about it too. It was in November 2012, when I informed my doctor that I was so listless I couldn’t even think straight anymore. In fact, it was so bad that I convinced myself that I was experiencing preliminary stages of Alzheimer’s Disease. He sent me for blood tests and again, I heard nothing more.
January 2013, my doctor contacted me once again and threatened me with the Ministry of Transportation call if I didn’t take care of the sleep apnea . I immediately informed him that it was his responsibility to get to the bottom of this as per my visit in November, but I would call to talk to the clinic. The KW Sleep clinic informed me that I had to once again go through the whole process.
Sheer Disappointment in Service
Once I arrived a sheet was given to me with the name Vern on it and an appointment date. I immediately wondered if this is what happened the last time. Did they have the names wrong? Again, the appointment was set 5 months later. I immediately informed the technician that my driver’s license was at risk and waiting 5 months was inexcusable.
The next day,I phoned my doctor to inform him that I took the test. Two weeks later, I received the another threatening call from my doctor telling me to get it done or they will call the MOT. I said “What the HELL!!!” I immediately ranted that this sleep apnea thing was just a scam and that they better get down to the bottom of my sleepiness because I’m beyond myself with fatigue. I’m making stupid mistakes, I zone out, and I feel like my memory is gone completely.
Long story short, I had my appointment a few weeks ago with the sleep specialist. I could not understand a word he said but I was informed that I had to do another secondary test with the sleep apnea machine.
This whole experience had me believing that sleep apnea was a farce and not a true sleep disorder. However, after sleeping with the sleep apnea machine I was proven wrong. The technician advised me that I would probably not feel any difference from using the machine for one night. However, for a brief 24 hour period, my clarity returned. I did not have inoperable daytime fatigue and I felt refreshed until around supper time. Hallelujah!
Another 5 week wait
I’m so excited to get this machine. I’m back to being listless and tired most of the day. I can’t stand it as one false move can have me in tears. I was informed that it could take up to 5 weeks before my final results are analyzed and a prescription is made. Gah!
This whole two-year ordeal has been misery. From the incompetence of the sleep clinic to the non-responsiveness of my general practitioner, I feel like I’ve been taken for a ride. All I really want is to feel refreshed and capable of working at optimal capacity.
I’m waiting to hear from some home health care places to learn more about the machines. However, until I receive my prescription my hands are tied and my head is sleepy.
Do you have sleep apnea? Did you have as much misery as I did?