Help & Care

Dedicated to serve the helpless in the present panic situation

BEFORE WE START

COVID-19: What is oxygen concentrator and how does it work? Here’s all you need to know!

As India battles the 2nd wave of the COVID-19 pandemic, the surge of new infections has resulted in an alarming increase in the number of active cases. The resultant stress on our public health infrastructure has led to a big spike in demand for oxygen concentrators.

So, what precisely are oxygen concentrators, when would they be required, how are they to be used? or not used ? Here’s a quick lowdown on the same.
 
To survive, we need a steady supply of oxygen, flowing from our lungs to various cells in the body. COVID-19 is a respiratory disease that affects our lungs and can cause the oxygen level to drop to dangerous levels. In such a situation, we would need to undergo what is known as oxygen therapy – using oxygen for medical treatment, to enhance our oxygen levels to clinically acceptable levels.
o2mask 2 Swaasth Sewa    51HNnMDqHL. AC SX425 Swaasth Sewa

Oxygen level is measured by oxygen saturation, known briefly as SpO2. This is a measure of the amount of oxygen-carrying haemoglobin in the blood. A healthy individual with normal lungs, will have an arterial oxygen saturation of 95% – 100%.

According to a WHO training manual on pulse oximetry, if the oxygen saturation is 94% or lower, the patient needs to be treated quickly. A saturation of less than 90% is a clinical emergency.

Now, according to the latest clinical guidance for management of adult COVID-19 patients, issued by the Ministry of Health & Family Welfare, an oxygen concentration less than or equal to 93% on room air requires hospital admission, while that below 90% is classified as a severe disease, requiring admission in ICU. However, given the prevalent situation in the wake of the 2nd wave, we must do whatever we best can, in order to try and replenish our oxygen levels, in the event of delay or inability in getting hospital admission as per the clinical management protocol.

 

Oxygen Concentrator – how does it work ?

We know that atmospheric air has roughly 78% nitrogen and 21% oxygen. Oxygen concentrators are simple devices which do precisely what its name promises – they take in ambient air and increase the oxygen concentration, by filtering out and throwing away nitrogen.

These Oxygen concentrators work the same way in supplying oxygen needed by the body such as oxygen tanks or cylinders, with the use of a cannula, oxygen masks or nasal tubes. The difference is that, while the cylinders need to be refilled, the Oxygen Concentrators can work 24 x 7.

So, who can use them, and when?

Governments big decision regarding Oxygen now oxygen concentrator can be Swaasth Sewa

Does this mean that anyone who finds their oxygen level falling below acceptable levels can use a concentrator and help oneself? Absolutely not.

Speaking to PIB on the appropriate usage of concentrators, Professor and Head of Department Anaesthesia, B. J. Medical College, Pune, Prof. Sanyogita Naik said: “Oxygen concentrators can be used only in moderate cases of COVID-19, when the patient experiences drop in oxygen levels, where the oxygen requirement is a maximum of 5 litres per minute.”

The professor added that oxygen concentrators are also very useful for patients experiencing post-COVID complications which necessitate oxygen therapy.

ABHAY UPADHYAY

ABHAY UPADHYAY

Leave a Comment

-----

Info Centre

It has become a matter of concern with too many miss-interpretations and rumour being shared on Social Media. We are here to help you with clear first hand information about required health acre activities to be followed.

Blogs

We will be providing first hand information on Step by Step daily care activities for your speedy recovery.

Videos

Clear and concise videos for your easy understanding in both Hindi and English.

Updates

We will be presenting updated information on health care activities going on in our country to help you with required resources.