Home Oxygen Concentrator Info & Tips:
Specialty Medical Supply is one of the largest providers of home oxygen supplies to the hospital, nursing home, and home care market in the United States. Specialty Medical takes pride in its extensive knowledge of home oxygen concentrators and its ability to provide answers to our customers questions concerning which suction machine is right for their current situation or application. [ see current models and prices ]
Specialty Medical also feels it carries the top oxygen concentrator equipment in the healthcare industry from the top manufacturers. Specialty Medical is able to provide substantial cost savings compared to other companies based on the fact that we sell hundreds of home oxygen concentrators to hospitals, nursing homes, schools, EMT's and several other healthcare establishments in such large volumes. Specialty Medical has put together an informative page to better answer some of your questions regarding oxygen concentrators.
What is an Oxygen Concentrator and when is it used?
An Oxygen Concentrator is most often used as a treatment for COPD – Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease. With COPD, the airways and alveoli lose their shape and become floppy. When the airways and alveoli lose their elasticity, the airways collapse, like a floppy hose, and the alveoli tend to stay inflated. The floppy airways obstruct the airflow out of the lungs, leading to an abnormal increase in the lungs' size. In addition, the airways may become inflamed and thickened, and mucus-producing cells produce more mucus, further contributing to the difficulty of getting air out of the lungs. Less air gets in and less air goes out because:
- The airways and alveoli lose their elasticity.
- The walls between many of the alveoli are destroyed.
- The walls of the airways become thick and inflamed
- Cells in the airways make more mucus (sputum) than usual, which tends to clog the airways.
COPD develops slowly, and it may be many years before symptoms such as a feeling of shortness of breath are noticed. Most of the time, COPD is diagnosed in middle-aged or older people.
If COPD is severe and oxygen levels in the blood are low, a patient is not getting enough oxygen on their own. The doctor may recommend oxygen therapy (with an home oxygen concentrator) to help with shortness of breath. Extra oxygen may be needed all the time or just some of the time. For some people with severe COPD, using a home oxygen oxygen concentrator for more than 15 hours a day can help with the following:
- Performing activities with less shortness of breath
- Protecting the heart and other organs from damage
- Sleeping more during the night and improve alertness during the day
- Extending the length of life
Inogen One Portable Oxygen System
The XPO2 is lightweight, clinically robust, and easy to operate.
If a person smokes, the most important thing they can do to stop more damage to the lungs is to quit smoking. The Web site of the U.S. Office of the Surgeon General has information on how to quit smoking. Many hospitals have smoking cessation programs or can make a referral to one.
It is also important to keep home oxygen concentrators away from people who are smoking and places where smokers are known to be. Staying away from other lung irritants such as pollution, dust, and certain cooking or heating fumes is also important. For example, it is important to stay in the house when the outside air quality is poor.
Free Shipping on most of our Home Medical Equipment from Specialty Medical Supply
Where should the home oxygen concentrator machine be used?
Keep the oxygen concentrator at least 12-18 inches away from items that would block inlet ports. Keep the concentrator at least 12-18 inches away from drapes, bedspreads, walls or any other item that might clock the inlet areas. If the oxygen concentrator is too noisy, place it in an adjacent room.
Care for your oxygen concentrator.
Oxygen systems require very little cleaning. The only item that requires cleaning on the concentrator is the external filter. The unit itself can be washed with a damp cloth. All cleaning must be done in an already clean environment. Avoid cleaning your equipment after vacuuming, under an open window, or in dusty, dirty, or smokey areas.
- Step 1: Remove the filter
- Step 2: Wash in warm water and a non-lotion detergent (such as Joy).
- Step 3: Rinse the filter thoroughly with warm water.
- Step 4: Gently squeeze water from the filter and set on the counter to dry.
- Step 5: Reattach the filter. Do not replace the filter until it is fully dry. This could cause damage to the concentrator. The only other item that would require cleaning would be a humidifier bottle if one is being used. (View Oxygen Concentrators)