Portable Oxygen Concentrators
Portable oxygen concentrators, commonly abbreviated as POCs, are small, portable, medical respiratory therapy devices that deliver concentrated oxygen (O2) to a respiratory patient. A portable oxygen concentrator takes ambient air and filters out everything except for the oxygen. Depending upon the patient's respiratory needs, portable concentrators are available in two delivery methods: Pulse Dose and Continuous Flow. To determine which product will meet your needs, Vitality Medical suggests that you consult with your doctor to ensure that you select the right portable oxygen machine.
- 30% Smaller than the Eclipse
- Has the Most Settings: 1-9
- 24/7 operation
- high battery duration
- durable metal case
- longest warranty
Weight Flow Rate (LPM) Battery Life FAA Approved Warranty 4.90 lbs Pulse Dose: 1 to 4 4 to 8 Hours Yes 3 Years
Weight Flow Rate (LPM) Battery Life FAA Approved Warranty 18.40 lbs Continuous Flow: 1 to 3
Pulse Dose: 1 to 9
2 Hours Yes 3 Years
Weight Flow Rate (LPM) Battery Life FAA Approved Warranty 7.25 lbs Pulse Dose: 1 to 6 4 to 8 Hours Yes 3 Years
Weight Flow Rate (LPM) Battery Life FAA Approved Warranty 1.75 lbs Pulse Dose: 2 1.5 Hours Yes 3 Years
Weight Flow Rate (LPM) Battery Life FAA Approved Warranty 4.40 lbs Pulse Dose: 3 2.5 Hours Yes 3 Years
Weight Flow Rate (LPM) Battery Life FAA Approved Warranty 14.00 lbs Continuous Flow: 1 to 3
Pulse Dose: 1 to 9
2.7 Hours Yes 3 Years
Weight Flow Rate (LPM) Battery Life FAA Approved Warranty 10.00 lbs Pulse Dose: 1 to 6
Continuous Flow: 0.5 to 2
3.5 Hours Yes 3 Years
Weight Flow Rate (LPM) Battery Life Warranty 5.60 lbs Pulse Dose: 1 to 4
Continuous Flow: 1 to 6
6 to 22 Hours 2 Years
Weight Flow Rate (LPM) Battery Life FAA Approved Warranty 19.00 lbs Continuous Flow: 0.5 to 3
Pulse Dose: 0.5 to 3
5.75 Hours Yes 5 Years
Weight Flow Rate (LPM) Battery Life FAA Approved Warranty 5.80 lbs Pulse Dose: 5 3.5 Hours Yes 3 Years
Weight Flow Rate (LPM) Battery Life FAA Approved Warranty 25.00 lbs Pulse Does: 1 to 5 2.5 Hours Yes 3 Years
Weight Flow Rate (LPM) Battery Life FAA Approved Warranty 19.00 lbs Pulse Dose: 1 to 6
Continuous Flow: 1 to 3
4.7 Hours Yes 3 Years
Weight Flow Rate (LPM) Battery Life FAA Approved Warranty 9.90 lbs Pulse Does: 1 to 5 3 Hours Yes 3 Years
Types of Mobile Devices
1. Pulse Flow/Pulse Dose
Pulse flow portable oxygen concentrator, also referred to as "on-demand oxygen therapy," intermittently administers a volume of oxygen measured in milliliters per breath. Pulse flow oxygen generators have the capability of reaching a setting of 6, which is not the same as 6 liters per minute (LPM). Most patients do not use a pulse flow concentrator during sleep because they may not detect breaths accurately. However, this does not mean that it is impossible. We recommend that you consult with your medical provider about sleeping with these devices because your practitioner may recommend a sleep study to determine if it adequately delivers the necessary supplemental O2. A pulse flow is usually smaller than continuous flow. Patients can easily transport them with a strap or handle. Please note that a pulse flow compressor is not compatible with CPAP or BiPAP machines. Patients using CPAP or BiPAP will need to couple their sleep apnea device with a continuous flow or stationary device.
2. Continuous Flow
Continuous flow portable oxygen concentrator administer oxygen in liters per minute. The therapeutic range for continuous flow usually varies between 1 and 3 LPM. Higher continuous flow machines are currently under development. Continuous flow generators administer O2 continuously during inhalation and exhalation. Generally, a continuous flow model is significantly larger in size and weight because it requires a larger pump and assembly. The larger models usually come with a wheeled cart or retractable handle to enable patients to easily move them around. Continuous flow devices are compatible with a CPAP or BiPAP machine. To couple the two devices, please call Vitality Medical for instructions.
Choosing a Device for Airline Travel
Many patients feel that their quality of life is negatively impacted due to the necessity of oxygen therapy. However, with portable machines, individuals can go out to dinner at restaurants, visit friends and family, enjoy vacations, and even travel on airlines! The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) approves a wide variety of products for use on board aircraft. The FAA requires the machines to run on a battery or a power source provided by the airline. POC's are multi-voltage, and you may use them anywhere in the world with an international travel adapter. Please note that you should never couple your machine with a power inverter.
There are stipulations set by the FAA for people flying with a portable oxygen concentrator. You may need to show a valid prescription stating the necessity for the device. Battery time is a crucial component while flying. To be absolutely certain of your flight's regulations, please contact the airline and ask them about their POC policies. As a general rule of thumb, most commercial airlines require the device to have a battery life of 150% of the time of flight. For example, if your flight is two hours long, you will need at least three hours of battery life. Depending upon your flight time, you may need to purchase additional batteries to meet your airline's regulation. Most of the FAA-approved machines will fit underneath the seat or in the overhead bin.
Although they are durable, it is important to remember that the parts may break or malfunction. It is vital to have a backup plan should there be any issues with your device. Portable oxygen therapy devices are often under warranty with Vitality Medical. Representatives will assist you with getting your device serviced by the manufacturer. Vitality Medical can also lend you another portable oxygen machine so you can continue with your respiratory therapy while your's is being repaired.
Vitality Medical sells and rents devices in our online store. To determine which device is best for you, visit the POC reviews.
A ruling by the Department of Transportation (section 382.133, "Nondiscrimination on the Basis of Disability in Air Travel" effective May 13, 2009) states that "air carriers conducting passenger service must permit someone with a disability to use an FAA-approved portable oxygen machine on all flights (on aircraft originally designed to have a maximum passenger capacity of more than 19 seats)." The FAA has approved 21 portable oxygen concentrators for airline travel. Here at Vitality Medical all the portable oxygen concentrators are FAA approved or pending approval. Liquid oxygen is not approved by the FAA.