Respiratory Question #41


A client’s sleep study reveals obstructive sleep apnea, and new orders are received for instruction on use of CPAP at bedtime. The nurse will begin instruction by explaining the purpose of the CPAP. What is the best explanation for use of CPAP?


  1. “ The CPAP is a medical device used to keep air passages open while you sleep.”
    • Rationale:
  2. “CPAP stands for continuity of the peripheral airway parameters.”
    • Rationale:
  3. “CPAP may be used intermittently through the sleep period.”
    • Rationale:
  4. “You may have a small crack of air between the mask and your face to avoid claustrophobia.”
    • Rationale:



CPAP (Continuous Positive Airway Pressure) is a medical device used to keep the air passages open during sleep. It keeps the alveoli open, which allows for optimal gas perfusion (Make sure explanation is not filled with medical jargon, but statements that the client can understand). It is used during sleep, not intermittently. CPAP may use a mask that covers nose/mouth; nose only; or through nasal attachment that is on the end of the nose. The constant flow of air through the tubing prevents air passages via nose and throat from collapsing. The mask should not leak air during use.

Learning Outcomes

Test Taking Tip

Video Rationale