There is some great news for sleep apnea patients who need to use a CPAP machine. Many people have a problem with using their CPAP machine because the masks are uncomfortable. They also often don't work right because they leave too much room for mishaps that cause air leaks. Some people even end up not using their CPAP machine, for both of these reasons. This can be dangerous to the health of someone with moderate to severe sleep apnea.
Thankfully, improvements in medical science and equipment are always evolving, and finally, there is something that will eliminate the need for obstructive and often faulty CPAP masks. This new invention comes from an unlikely source, but it's been found to be effective.
The new company called “Airing” has created the world's first hoseless, cordless and maskless battery powered CPAP device. Not only is it the smallest nasal pillow, but it eliminates the need for a mask, a hose, as well as the CPAP machine itself. It was introduced in May of 2015 and has been undergoing testing to make sure it's ready to be used by the general public.
It uses sophisticated “micro-blower” technology, and the inventor named Stephen Marsh is responsible for inventing this amazing and small piece of medical equipment, which has been described as a “happy accident”.
Marsh didn't intend on creating a small, portable CPAP device, but after designing and working with powerful micro-blowers, he looked into other ways they can be used. He was inspired by his brother, who has sleep apnea, but refuses to use a CPAP machine.
“My brother suffers from sleep apnea and is what is known as "non-compliant" (he won’t wear the traditional sleep mask). In thinking about his situation, I realized that the pumping capability of my new design could just as easily be used to pump air into a small device that could fit in your nose.
If the device could blow the right amount of air at the right pressure, it could revolutionize the treatment of sleep apnea. I checked the specifications of the standard CPAP machines and concluded that these new "micro-blowers" could provide the same effect but in a portable and disposable form.
Once I had designed these micropumps, I realized that they could and should be built using the “roll-to-roll” (R2R) manufacturing process. I validated this with Kodak who is probably the most knowledgeable manufacturing company in the R2R space since they developed much of the science and art behind it.
Using Kodak’s five-foot wide machine running at 83 feet per second, it can make three million micro pumps each minute! WOW!! This makes them so low cost; they can be disposable.
I then discussed the concept of medical experts, who were uniformly enthusiastic about the potential of the micro blowers approach to treating breathing disorders. Based on this apparent feasibility and the desperate need for an alternative to the traditional CPAP masks, we formed Airing to develop the next generation CPAP breathing device."