*As always, check with your Doctor first before making any changes to your oxygen dosage.
We know that it is very tempting to imagine the freedom that a portable oxygen concentrator (POC) can give you. Unfortunately, this freedom may come at a very high cost financially and even more importantly to your health.
The need to maintain adequate blood oxygen levels to avoid damaging your Lungs, Heart and Brain is the primary goal for anyone with a Pulmonary condition.
We would like to share some very important information that could save your life!
It would be quite counter productive to go through the trouble of carrying and wearing an oxygen device only to find that you are not getting the safe amount of oxygen that your body needs. We suggest that patients maintain an SpO2 (Pulse ox level) of 93% or greater at all times. Luckily, your blood oxygen levels can easily be checked by using a Pulse Oximeter.
If you don’t own a Pulse Oximeter you can enter our drawing to win a FREE one here: http://t.co/NRGUrnyWD3
Please check with your Medical provider to accurately check your Spo2 levels while using your current oxygen delivery device or if you are trying out a new device (especially Pulse Dose Oxygen) to make sure you are an appropriate candidate. We suggest a simple walking test of 6 minutes while not letting your blood oxygen levels (SpO2) go below 93% to insure you are getting the correct and safe dosage of oxygen. Some people will allow SpO2 levels 90% or greater, but we are a little more conservative.
Here are some other important factors to consider before you buy a POC:
- Is it continuous flow, pulse dose oxygen or both?
- Are you an appropriate candidate for pulse oxygen?
- What are the flow ranges it delivers?
- How many batteries are included?
- How many hours will the battery last?
- How long until I need another battery?
- What is the replacement battery cost?
- Which adapters are included: Wall outlet, car, plane?
- The total weight of the unit?
- Is it FAA approved?
Take your time and make an informed decision. It is very upsetting for many patients that have bought POC’s and later discovered that they cannot use them because it doesn’t provide the correct dosage of oxygen that they need to maintain safe oxygen levels.
Don’t risk permanently damaging your body from lack of oxygen, for the “convenience” of using a POC!
I hope this brief guide helps you make a safe and informed decision!
Have a great day,
About the author:
David Junga, RRT is a Nationally Board Certified Registered Respiratory Therapist and Program Director at Pulmonary Rehabilitation Associates, LLC and PulmonaryRehab.com. David has been in private practice since 1999 and loves teaching patients how to overcome their shortness of breath.
David is also a Postural Alignment Specialist certified by the Egoscue University and Program Director at CtPainFree. His other passion is teaching people how to eliminate chronic pain through simple yet powerful corrective exercises.