Blogs > Sleeping with CPAP

Assistant News Editor Lee Dryden was diagnosed with sleep apnea and uses a CPAP (continuous positive airway pressure) machine to assist with breathing while sleeping. From a layman’s point of view, he will discuss the benefits, issues, challenges and frustrations of sleeping while wearing a mask.

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Sleep apnea doesn’t spare the rich, famous

  Among the millions who suffer from sleep apnea are some big names who can do more to raise awareness of the issue than the humble writer of this blog you are kind enough to read.
  Regis Philbin and Rosie O’Donnell have spoken publicly about their apnea and CPAP use, according to Historical figures such as Winston Churchill, Teddy Roosevelt and Queen Victoria also reportedly suffered from apnea.
  The sleepconnect post mentioned John Candy, Jerry Garcia and NFL great Reggie White with sleep apnea listed as a factor in their deaths.
  Conan O’Brien sidekick Andy Richter once showed off his CPAP mask for the late-night TV audience, according to
  Closer to home, Detroit Lions rookie defensive tackle Nick Fairley has sleep apnea and perhaps that revelation improved his NFL draft status (and maybe provided him a few more bucks from being drafted higher).
  John Glennon’s blog in the Tennessean addresses some pre-draft concerns that Fairley was known for nodding off in meetings while starring at Auburn. Clearly, that’s not a good thing for prospective employers ready to shell out millions to a rookie, even one as skilled as Fairley.
  You guessed it, Fairley was sleepy because of his apnea and assured teams he had it under control.
  “Ever since I got the machine, I’ve been really aware of everything,” Fairley told the NFL Network, as quoted in the Glennon’s blog. “The machine helps you breathe throughout the night so you get the proper rest so you can be ready the next day.”
  Retired NBA great Shaquille O’Neal took part in a Harvard University sleep apnea study after his significant other (sound familiar, apnea crew?) expressed concern about his snoring patterns, according to Kelly Dwyer’s Ball Don’t Lie blog on Yahoo Sports. Can you imagine the sounds from a man that size (over 7 feet, well north of 300 pounds)?
  The point of all this is that celebrities have a unique opportunity to spread the word about the dangers of apnea and the benefits of CPAP and other remedies. Think of all the causes, illnesses and charities that have been boosted by those watched by the public.
  As I’ve said before, there are millions with undiagnosed sleep apnea (a few famous folks prone to snoring among them, I bet) so anyone able to shed light on the issue would be doing a service by sharing their experience.


Blogger Jennifer said...


You are right. It doesn't spare rich, famous.

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February 20, 2012 at 12:53 AM 
Blogger kaney said...

Sleep apnea is a serious sleep disorder that occurs when a person's breathing stops for 10 seconds or longer during sleep. The Greek word "apnea" literally means "without breath". Sleeping with a CPAP mask (CPAP Therapy) is a popular treatment, but can present additional problems for the patient. We discuss those here.


June 28, 2012 at 11:19 PM 
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