Continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) devices made by Philips Respironics Inc. are still presumed by the U.S. FDA and other regulators to present a health hazard to patients, but the company’s latest data seem to suggest otherwise. In a Dec. 21 statement, the Royal Philips subsidiary said that testing suggests no appreciable harm to health related to particulate matter emissions from the polyester-based polyurethane (PE-PUR) foam in these devices, and that there is no evidence of long-term harm associated with volatile organic compounds (VOCs), both of which are conclusions with which the FDA may not agree.
The FDA issued a rare 518(a) Notification Order to Royal Philips NV last week that requires the company to take more aggressive measures to notify patients, physicians and distributors about the June 2021 class I recall of its continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) and bilevel positive airway pressure (BiPAP) systems. The recall stemmed from health risks posed by the deterioration of the polyester-based polyurethane (PE-PUR) noise reducing foam in the equipment.
Newly launched startup Somne Inc. plans to give CPAP machines a run for their money by replacing CPAP masks and hoses for treating obstructive sleep apnea with a gentler collar encircling the patient’s neck. The new device uses variable negative pressure to ensure users get a good night’s sleep instead of positive airway pressure employed by companies such as Resmed Inc. and Philips Respironics Inc.