With the tremendous increase in air pollutants, smoke, smog, and other hazardous agents, the incidence of respiratory disorders has also elevated. Health issues like asthma and emphysema have become more common than ever. Getting a bronchial infection is also easier and quicker than before. The reason behind these piling respiratory disease rates is the already damaged lungs because of long-term exposure to pollutants. Such patients require proper medical care for a suitable period. In severe cases, a patient might also need supplemental oxygen to meet the needs of the body. For this purpose, devices like portable oxygen concentrators come in handy. Let us understand what a portable oxygen concentrator is and when should it be used.
Statistics Regarding Respiratory Issues in the US
According to the American Thoracic Society, in the United States alone, nearly 1.5 million people require breathing assistance in the form of supplemental oxygen due to a variety of chronic respiratory disorders. This supplemental oxygen therapy improves the patient’s quality of life by easing the process of gaseous exchange thus ultimately prolonging survival.
What is a Portable Oxygen Concentrator?
Portable oxygen concentrators or POCs are the devices used to concentrate oxygen up to a level greater than that in the ambient air with the aim of providing oxygen therapy to patients with respiratory issues. The instrument is lightweight, mobile, and compact in size. Portable oxygen concentrators have also been approved by the FDA. It works by drawing nitrogen from the air and resultantly leaving oxygen in a concentrated form.
Who Needs a Portable Oxygen Concentrator?
Patients suffering from any of the following breathing-related issues need an oxygen concentrator:
● Severe flu
● Respiratory infections such as COVID-19
● Sleep apnea
● Cystic fibrosis
● Lung cancer
● Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD)
Characteristics and Advantages of a Portable Oxygen Concentrator
The following are the characteristics features as well and advantages provided by a portable oxygen concentrator:
● Portable oxygen concentrators are light in weight. Usually, their weight lies between the ranges of 2 to 5 kg. This makes the devices easy to carry and move from place to place.
● Portable oxygen concentrators are quiet devices that do not cause much noise while working.
● A portable oxygen concentrator can deliver oxygen at a continuous rate as well as sporadically i.e. pulsed flow.
● The device is appropriate for long-term as well as short-term use.
● POCs are suitable for respiratory issues, especially for COPD patients in whom hypoxemic states can be prevented by continuous oxygen supplementation.
● Oxygen concentrators are chargeable and usually have a long battery life.
● The price range of portable oxygen concentrators is between $2,000 to $4,000.
Portable Oxygen Concentrators-Brands and Specifications
Multiple brands manufacture portable oxygen concentrators some of which have been enlisted below along with a brief description of their features:
● Zen-O Portable Oxygen Concentrator
Zen-O portable oxygen concentrators are a product of GCE. Their weight is nearly 5 kg (approximately 10 lbs) and they have a capacity to deliver oxygen at a rate of 2 liters per minute. The operational efficiency of the device is top-notch at an affordable cost. Both continuous as well pulse flow options are available in Zen-O portable oxygen concentrators. The product is highly suitable for home use.
● Zen-O Lite Pulse Flow Oxygen Concentrator
Zen-O lite pulse flow oxygen concentrator by GCE has an ultra-lightweight design with a weight of just 2.5 kg or 5.5 lbs. The rate of oxygen delivery through it is 1050 ml per minute. The device has nearly no sound and operates at a sound frequency of 37 decibels. For people who have an active lifestyle, the Zen-O lite portable oxygen concentrator is the most suitable option for oxygen supplementation.
● Inogen Portable Oxygen Concentrator
Inogen One G3 portable oxygen concentrator has a battery life of up to 10 hours. The device comes with a double battery and can also be connected to an app on the patient’s mobile phone. Moreover, the product is not noisy and works best in a quieter environment. Only the pulse flow option is available.
The oxygen flow rate from the device is 1260 milliliters per minute. In addition, an easy-to-read LED display indicates the level of oxygen purity as well as no-breath detected alarms. In case of a power outage, the device also has the capability to indicate malfunctioning by initiating an audible alarm system.
● Philips Respironics SimplyGo Portable Oxygen Concentrator
Philips Respironics SimplyGo portable oxygen concentrator has been designed in a way that its safety has been widely enhanced. The product comes with a carrying case, a mobile cart, and a detachable accessory bag. Pulse dose range is 1 to 6 with an output of 1.44 LPM. The weight of the device is only 10 pounds which makes it one of the most suitable devices for portability. Moreover, Philips Respironics SimplyGo concentrator has also been approved by the FAA which means the product is suitable for use during air travel.
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Oxygen, being necessary for the human body, needs to be constantly supplied to the body. Air in our atmosphere carries enough oxygen to provide for all of us. However, if a person’s lungs are enable to extract this oxygen, supplementation is required using an oxygen concentrator.
Portable oxygen concentrators can be used at home for chronically ill patients with respiratory conditions. These are light in weight, compact in size, and completely mobile. Purchasing medical devices from reliable vendors like Health Supply 770 ensures the provision of quality products along with satisfactory services.