Keep it clean

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Monday, June 26, 2017

For the millions of people living with sleep apnea, CPAP machines can be life-changing, but regular upkeep is required to maintain their peak performance.

Daily cleaning encourages healthy habits that make it more likely for patients to keep using their CPAP, said Dr. Joseph Krainin, a sleep doctor and founder of Singular Sleep, a virtual sleep center.

“That’s the ideal situation when it comes to your health,” said Krainin, who also serves as chief medical adviser for SoClean, an automated CPAP cleaner and sanitizer.

He shared some thoughts with HME News recently about the importance of CPAP hygiene and cleaning.

HME News: Why is it important for patients to clean CPAP equipment?

Dr. Joseph Krainin: The amazing thing about CPAP is that there’s no risk to it. It’s extraordinarily safe. The only thing you have to do is clean it regularly. Cleaning reduces risks of pathogens getting into the humidifier system and breeding. If that happens, then you’re breathing that in very directly.

HME: Are patients trained in how to clean the CPAP when they get the equipment?

Krainin: At most DMEs, it’s whatever information they have to share. If you read the instruction manual, you’re going to read it should be cleaned. But it’s not necessarily communicated to them.

HME: What can CPAP providers do to emphasize the importance of cleaning these machines?

Krainin: In my practice we do make it a priority to talk about that. When setting realistic goals about the use, people should know they’re going to have to replenish certain parts on a regular basis. That’s also a good opportunity to talk about the importance of cleaning a machine and coming up with a plan to do that.

HME: What about machines like SoClean that do the work of cleaning CPAP machines?

Krainin: They take the guesswork out of “Did I do a good enough job?” It really comes down to: do you want a dishwasher or do you want to wash all your dishes by hand?