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Oxygen therapy increases the amount of oxygen in the lungs and the bloodstream. You may need oxygen therapy if there are signs that the cells of your body are not getting enough oxygen.
You may use oxygen therapy at home or in the hospital if you have low oxygen levels in your blood because of pneumonia, lung cancer, COPD, or other conditions. You can choose between a number of delivery systems and breathing devices.
Oxygen delivery systems include:
You can breathe your oxygen through a face mask or a flexible plastic tube inserted in your nostrils (nasal cannula).
Choose your oxygen delivery system based on your ability to move around. People who are homebound may find an oxygen concentrator gives them the best combination of convenience and cost.
In all oxygen delivery systems, the risk of fire or explosion is high if you use oxygen around lit cigarettes or an open flame. If you or those who care for you smoke, oxygen therapy may not be a good option.
|Primary Medical Reviewer||E. Gregory Thompson, MD - Internal Medicine|
|Specialist Medical Reviewer||R. Steven Tharratt, MD, MPVM, FACP, FCCP - Pulmonology, Critical Care Medicine, Medical Toxicology|
|Last Revised||March 17, 2011|
Last Revised: March 17, 2011
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