I bought a oxygen concentrator and now I feel stupid.
I followed the advice here:
and just in panic bought a oxygen concentrator due to the comment at 51:36.
“if you just have one of those in your extended family and if one of your family members comes down with an illness, it can literally be the difference between life and death.”
So I bought an everflo.
The instruction book says: “Do not use for life support or life threatening situation.”
“You need a professional to use this. Wrong use can cause lethal damage to the brain.”
Does that mean I bought them for nothing? Are they useless? What do I do with it?
If it is useful..
- Do I give this off to a doctor when one of my family members needs to go to the hospital?
- If staying at home, do I need to use a humidification bottle?
- Do I need a nose thingies a mask? I can’t find any Philips accessoires with it, so I bought this: https://www.zuurstofconcentrator.nl/EN/starterkit
- Is that okay?
- How do I know what oxygen flow rate is needed?
Eh, it’s medical equipment. All of it is lethal if used in the wrong way. Read up everything you can about them and how to use them – how to tell if you are doing it right or not. What the traps are (eg bacteria formation in tubing). See if you can adapt it to use in a safer way – maybe an oxygen tent type set up? Maybe it’s not that dangerous with a bit of care and it’s only the manufacturer covering themselves? I don’t know but the only way to know is to read up!
Maybe it’s not that dangerous with a bit of care and it’s only the manufacturer covering themselves?
I hope so.
I don’t know but the only way to know is to read up!
The manual is no less general than this:
It’s all: “Perscribed by a doctor”.
There are probably hundreds of thousands or millions of these machines in the possession of people with respiratory weakness. These same people are likely not medical professionals, or highly trained in the theory and use of the machines. They are simply told to put a mask over your nose (or use cannula tubes) to supply concentrated oxygen when their ability to get enough oxygen from standard atmospheric air is lacking. I just listened to a video from JAMA network on YouTube where the doctor said every patient they see has hypoxia. You are now better positioned to survive a moderately severe infection; if you need care to a level that requires invasive ventilator support your concentrator won’t help. But perhaps the medical system will be overwhelmed and your concentrator may make the difference. Hopefully you never use your machine and feel like a fool 2 years from now. Then simply sell it on Craigslist.
I also ordered one.
From what my wife (critical care nurse) told me, the risk is when one’s lung function is compromised, respiration can become oxygen driven instead of CO2 driven. If too much oxygen is supplied, and not enough CO2 is being expelled it is lethal. Without the ability to do arterial blood gas measurements, you cannot tell if that balance is being maintained.
Having said all that, supplemental oxygen to assist if someone’s O2 sats are dropping is critical.
Dropping O2 saturation is definitely lethal, so do your best with the concentrator if you find yourself in this unfortunate circumstance.
Recently, I was talking to a medical person and mentioned that I’d thought it would be nice to have my own machine to produce oxygen. Her reply MAY be connected to the warning you read. She said that what sometimes happens is that when using oxygen, the blood becomes so heavily concentrated with it that the body decides it doesn’t need to automatically breathe. (Of course, if a person is conscious, they can control their breath.) Only time I’d heard that, so take it with as large a grain of salt as you like.
Did you also get one of the devices that check blood oxygen levels? In the absence of regular medical care, that might help you make the decision about when to use the concentrator.
@folaht: I think it was a good idea to buy it. Just do some reading up about using it.
From what I read a prescription is required to purchase, so I’m curious if you got a prescription to purchase it? If so, how? I would expect someone would need to have low O2 saturation to get a scrip.
I bought one a few weeks back.
The only advice I have to add to the comments above is that (and I’m not an expert, this is just what I read – you should do your own homework) you should not use the humidifier for pneumonia.
One of the earliest papers from Wuhan described the treatment given to patients in the ICU. The vast majority of them were given 5L/min of oxygen and IV. A relatively small number were given intubation, and only a handful ECMO.
Basically I think an oxygen concentrator is the single piece of equipment most likely to save your life if you develop serious symptoms and do not have access to hospital care.
Solid purchase. In my view a much smarter buy than rice, bottled water and toilet paper :-).