What is Portable Oxygen Concentrator?
A portable oxygen concentrator (POC) is a medical device that supplements oxygen to patients with low levels of oxygen in their blood. It works by purifying the air in the room. The non-purified air typically contains about 80% of nitrogen and 20% of oxygen. A POC then converts this air into almost 95% of oxygen and 5% of nitrogen, thus satisfying the amount of oxygen required by patients.
Who needs POC?
Portable oxygen concentrators are becoming increasingly popular because of its mobility and flexibility to live a free, independent lifestyle. Typically, the lungs absorb the oxygen in the air and transfer it into the bloodstream. Thus, the more oxygen present in the air, the more available to be transferred into the bloodstream.
The following diseases below are a few examples of what a POC can cater to:
- Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD): a lung disease that blocks airflow and causes difficulty in breathing. Symptoms include shortness of breathing, wheezing, chronic coughing, and frequent respiratory infections.
- Interstitial lung disease (ILD): a disease that results from progressive damage to the lung tissue. ILD may be caused due to long exposure to hazardous materials such as coal dust. It could also be caused by auto-immune diseases such as rheumatoid arthritis. Symptoms may include dry cough, fatigue and shortness of breathing.
- Cystic fibrosis: an inherited disorder that causes damage to the lungs and digestive system. Symptoms include cough, repeated lung infections, inability to gain weight, and fatty stools.
- Sleep apnea: a sleep disorder in which breathing repeatedly stops and starts. This is more common in men and symptoms include snoring loudly, somnolence, and fatigue.
How to use a POC?
Disclaimer: Always have a doctors consent before using POC
Using a POC for the first time can be daunting but in reality, it is actually very intuitive and can be done in 3 simple steps:
- Start by first attaching your nasal cannula to the device
- Turn on the power button
- Lastly, set the oxygen flow prescribed by your doctor
Precautions while using POC
Feeling insecure while using the device is a natural thing. However, with the right precautions, it is completely safe to use.
- Avoid keeping inflammable substances close to you while using the POC
- Keep any type of open flame such as candles, stove at least 10 feet away
- Do not smoke or let anyone smoke near the POC
- Stay away from pools and water bodies
- Avoid aerosol products such as hair sprays, body sprays, and air fresheners
- Safely store it when in use to avoid injuries and damages to the device
- Safely store it when not in use away from sunlight
- Clean the nasal cannula on a regular basis and replace it if damaged
- Do not let water enter into the tube of the nasal cannula
- Always carry an extra battery if you are expected to be away from a power source for a long time
Benefits of a POC
- Convenient and easy to carry around
- Easy to use
- Easy to adjust the oxygen flow to any amount
- Improves mental alertness
- Increases survival chances
- Increases stamina
- Better sleep
- No need to be bedridden
- Do not have to carry around oxygen cylinders
- Much safer than the conventional type of Oxygen Concentrators
How can Pluspin help?
Pluspin offers a vast network of reliable suppliers that have medical equipment that suits your needs. With the flexibility to rent or buy a product, Pluspin also offers the best customer service.