During an emergency—such as a serious accident, possible heart attack, or other life-threatening event—you might be started on oxygen therapy right away.
While you're in the hospital, your doctor will check on you to make sure you're getting the right amount of oxygen. Nurses or respiratory therapists also may assist with the oxygen therapy.
If you're having oxygen therapy at home, a home equipment provider will help you set up the oxygen therapy equipment at your house.
Trained staff will show you how to use and take care of the equipment. They'll supply the oxygen and teach you how to safely handle it.
Because oxygen poses a fire risk, you'll need to take certain safety steps. Oxygen isn't explosive, but it can worsen a fire. In the presence of oxygen, a small fire can quickly get out of control. Also, the cylinder that compressed oxygen gas comes in can explode if it's exposed to heat.
Your home equipment provider will give you a complete list of safety steps that you'll need to follow at home and in public. For example, while on oxygen, you should:
When you're not using the oxygen, keep it in a large, airy room. Never store compressed oxygen gas cylinders and liquid oxygen containers in small, enclosed places, such as in closets, behind curtains, or under clothes.
Oxygen containers let off small amounts of oxygen. These small amounts can build up to harmful levels if they're allowed to escape into small spaces.
Clinical trials are research studies that explore whether a medical strategy, treatment, or device is safe and effective for humans. To find clinical trials that are currently underway for Oxygen Therapy, visit www.clinicaltrials.gov.
December 26, 2012
Benefits of higher oxygen, breathing device persist after infancy
By the time they reached toddlerhood, very preterm infants originally treated with higher oxygen levels continued to show benefits when compared to a group treated with lower oxygen levels, according to a follow-up study by a research network of the National Institutes of Health that confirms earlier network findings, Moreover, infants treated with a respiratory therapy commonly prescribed for adults with obstructive sleep apnea fared as well as those who received the traditional therapy for infant respiratory difficulties, the new study found.
The NHLBI updates Health Topics articles on a biennial cycle based on a thorough review of research findings and new literature. The articles also are updated as needed if important new research is published. The date on each Health Topics article reflects when the content was originally posted or last revised.