What are the PAP machines?
BiPAP vs CPAP machine?

There are different types of machines that aid positive airway pressure (PAP) therapy and they include the BiPAP (Bilevel Positive Airway Pressure) machine, the CPAP (continuous positive airways pressure) machine and the APAP (automatic positive airway pressure) machine.

They use compacted air to open and help ease discomfort in the airways especially when one is asleep. They are portable gadgets using the concept of pressurized air via a hose and mask to direct it into a patient’s airway. Now we will take a closer look at BiPAP vs CPAP machine.

BiPAP vs CPAP indications

BiPAP vs CPAP indications. Both CPAP and BiPAP machines come with a number of accessories with some similar parts like the hose and mask. Some editions come with humidifiers to keep the airway moist and heated tubing.

CPAP machines come with pressure settings that one can regulate from the range of 4 to 20cm H2o (centimeters of water pressure) inhaling or exhaling notwithstanding.

Bipap machines have two pressure settings which are IPAP which refers to inspiratory positive airway pressure and EPAP which refers to expiratory positive airway pressure.

The IPAP settings work when you inhale, increasing pressure for easier respiration while the EPAP setting decreases pressure when one exhales, easing the breathing process.

The switch from IPAP to EPAP may be set automatically according to the breathing pattern of the user or can be timed. The pressure of a BiPAP machine ranges from 4 t0 25cm H2o.

Though a CPAP machine has one setting, new models in the market have an inbuilt sensor that helps reduce air pressure when exhaling. One cannot set exhalation pressure on a CPAP machine unlike the EPAP setting on the BiPAP machine.

APAP on the other hand is automated to adjust to an individual’s breathing needs which change from time to time especially when one is sleeping. How does this machine know when to make adjustments?

It is fitted with technology that will keep on measuring how much your body opposes breathing every now and then and when it senses an air event such as snoring or hypopnea, it will add on or reduce pressure.

Compared to CPAP machines, APAP machines only give the amount of pressure that is required by the body at that moment. It has been recommended to patients experiencing CPAP therapy difficulties and to those with severe obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) conditions.

Difference between CPAP and BiPAP machines

What is the difference in CPAP and BiPAP? The main difference between CPAP and BiPAP machines is that BiPAP machines come with two distinct pressure settings, for inhaling and exhaling, unlike CPAP machines which have only one pressure setting.

Bipap machines are used to manage Central Sleep Apnea, Complex Sleep Apnea, or COP while CPAP machines are majorly used to manage OSA.

For one to get different air pressure from a CPAP machine, one has to request for a sleep doctor to do it manually whereas BiPAP machine settings are already applied to switch when one inhales or exhales. So there is a difference in CPAP and BiPAP


A BiPAP machine vs Ventilator

When talking about BiPAP machine vs ventilator. We need to first know what BiPAP is used for? BiPAP machines are used by patients with breathing difficulties to help with non-invasive therapy. One must inhale and exhale for it to work.

Ventilators are used when a patient is experiencing respiratory failure increasing oxygen supply in the blood by transporting air in and out of the lungs. Unlike the BiPAP machine, a doctor has to set how much air will be pushed into your lungs and how many pushes as well.


BiPAP Machine


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CPAP versus BiPAP. When considering CPAP or BiPAP. Patients often complain about the difficulty in breathing using CPAP machines because of its one pressure setting that makes it hard to exhale. At higher pressure settings, it can be quite difficult to exhale against the air being pushed in.

Bipap machines can include a breathing timer that will assess the number of breaths the user takes per minute. If it surpasses the set limit, it will increase the air pressure short-term forcing the user to breathe.

A doctor will recommend the right machine depending on the type of PAP therapy one needs. Both CPAP and BiPAP machines work for different conditions but there is some overlap.

When a patient develops difficulty using a CPAP machine for their PAP therapy, they are placed on BiPAP machines. Overall, I would say that the BiPAP machine has better functionality compared to the CPAP machine because of its two inhaling and exhaling settings.