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Sleep Apnea/Reversed Breathing?


My uncle was diagnosed with sleep apnea years ago and its the same loud, vibrating sound that a guy I have been seeing makes when he is asleep; he snores terribly and sounds like he is choking sometimes. At first, I thought it was just sleep apnea like my uncle, but when I actually watched, he breathing is reversed as soon as he falls asleep. When he inhales, his chest is going in instead of out, and when he exhales it returns to a "normal" position. *Could* this be sleep apnea, or might there be some other explanation?

Meghan:  what you are observing is called "paradoxical breathing" and is a cardinal sign of obstructive sleep apnea.  I would encourage your guy to speak with his physician on a timely basis.  Sleep apnea, if left untreated, can lead to serious and potentially deadly health consequences...

Sleep Apnea

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Dave Walsh RRT


Registered Respiratory Therapist and Licensed Respiratory Care Practitioner (IL). Thirty-five years in the field of Respiratory Care with the last twenty-five years spent concentrating in the area of sleep disordered breathing. Established the first hospital based compact multiphysiologic recording program for the diagnosis and treatment of obstructive sleep apnea syndrome (OSAS).


I'm proud to have built a comprehensive sleep disorders center in Chicago during the '80s and to then go on and build the first hospital based home sleep testing (HST) program in the country. I now own and operate Sleep Case Management, a Division of DRW&Associates Inc, providing sleep disorders case management services to physicians and their patients in northern IL along with providing home sleep testing and arrangements for in-lab sleep testing.

American Academy of Sleep Medicine, American Association for Respiratory Care

BSc (Biology), ASc (RT)

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