An oxygen concentrator, which is also sometimes referred to as an oxygen generator, is used to supply oxygen to a patient who requires assistance in breathing. Sometimes, a patient may require it if he or she is suffering from a condition that can cause low levels of oxygen in the blood stream.
In most cases, an oxygen concentrator always comes with a prescription, which means you cannot get it over the counter. If you are planning to buy a reused one, make sure you are aware of the following.
How Does An Oxygen Concentrator Work
An oxygen concentrator comes in two variants, one that works on electricity and another that is battery operated. In case the oxygen concentrator that you are looking at uses an electric battery, you will have to charge it through a power outlet.
There are different parts in each oxygen concentrator, such as a sieve bed filter, a compressor, as well as circuit boards.
One good thing about an oxygen concentrator is that it never runs out of oxygen. It works in such a way that it filters the available air, then compresses it and keeps supplying it to the patient in a constant stream. All you need to ensure that it does not run out of oxygen is to make sure that it is always charged properly.
An oxygen concentrator works in the following way:
- It sucks in air and compresses it, using its cooling mechanism to prevent the air from getting heated up.
- Using the sieve bed filter, it removes any trace of nitrogen.
- The machine comes with an electronic interface that allows it to adjust the settings depending on how much oxygen needs to be supplied to the patient and other such details.
- The purified oxygen reaches the patient through a mask or a nasal tube, as required.
6 Tips To Remember Before Buying
1. Understand The Prescription And The Exact Requirement
It is very important to know exactly what the doctor has prescribed for the patient while using the oxygen concentrator. When you head out to make the purchase, make sure you read the prescription thoroughly, including the flow instructions. This will help you buy the perfect fit.
2. Check The Duration For Which The Battery Works
Depending on for how long the machine will have to be used and other considerations, find a machine that comes with the suitable battery time. This is important in case you are using a battery operated machine or one that has an electrical battery.
3. Choose The Size And Weight That Will Work Best
Again, this point is very important as it will vary from person to person depending on a lot of factors, such as where the machine will be placed, who will help to handle the machine and so on and so forth.
4. Understand The Flow
The flow that the particular oxygen concentrator provides will be highlighted in LPM, or litre per minute form. Your doctor will also mention it on the prescription, so it is very important to make sure that you match it to the prescription before making a purchase decision. If this is a recent requirement, or a first time requirement, your doctor will most likely prescribe something that comes with a flow of up to 5 LPM. This is also one of the most common types available in the Indian market.
5. Check The PDI Checklist
The PDI checklist refers to the Pre Delivery Inspection checklist that is done for oxygen concentrators. This is a very important step to remember, as the checklist will have a lot of important information about the machine that will come in handy during your use of it.
6. Get The Warranty Note
The warranty note will help you to take care of any servicing that the machine may require in future. Different brands come with different warranty periods, ranging between 1 and 3 years.