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O2 Tanks and home concentrators vs Portable concentrators

My husband has moderate COPD and is on O2 24/7. We are considering switching from O2 tanks and a home concentrator to a system from Imogen which would have a portable for use at home (plugged in) and batteries for mobility. Can anyone share and experience with this type of system? Thank you.

  1. Thank you all for the responses to this topic. After careful consideration and speaking with his pulmonologist, we have decided to stay with the 02 tanks. I think a portable concentrator would have made sense earlier in the disease, but it does not seem practical or safe for him now.

    1. If you get one don't get a cheap one because they do not work well at all

      1. I use a portable oxygen concentrator I don't think it gives you enough air

        1. Hi. thank you for letting us know. One way to know for sure if your portable is giving you enough oxygen is to talk to your oxygen equipment provider. There is a piece of equipment that can be connected to the flowmeter on your portable oxygen device to determine if it is making the right amount of oxygen. Also, you may also talk to your physician, who can order a test to determine if your equipment, when you are using it, is keeping your oxygen levels at normal levels. One or both of these can give you the assurance that your equipment is (or is not) working for you. What do you think? John. copd.net community moderator.

        2. Hi Rosemary, and thanks for your comment. I see my colleague, , has already provided an excellent response with practical and prudent information. I agree with everything he has suggested.
          Once the concentrator's output is tested, and your own oxygen levels are evaluated, there will be a much better idea if everything is functioning the way it is supposed to be.
          Please do check back and let us know how this all turns out for you.
          Good luck!
          Leon (site moderator COPD.net)

      2. I'm also looking into the Inogen systems. I have a close friend who has one and swears by it, and he goes all over using it. I'm attempting to get one through Medicare, and if I can't, I may just buy one, though I can't easily afford it - they are not cheap. There are some differences to consider. One is the difference between Continuous flow and pulse flow oxygen, and the other main thing is the 02 level required. I need 3 lpm continuous but haven't used pulse flow so I'm not sure what I would need there. Based on what I've read I'd probably need 4-5 lpm pulse. There are a few portable machines that produce enough pulse or continuous flow to accommodate a requirement of maybe up to 5 lpm, maybe, but above that I don't think they are feasible. Anyway, I am supposedly approved now (says my doctor) but it's not yet official - I should know any day now. Of course, I'd still have the home concentrator, and the tanks for emergencies such as power outages. Also, I don't think the portables are suitable for use alone without the other systems also in place. But Medicare provides the home and tanks anyway, and for some of us the portables too. I'm still working on it, as I don't trust the tanks to go out away from the house - they are not at all reliable. So I will need a portable if I am to be able to expect to have a life.

        1. - Progress report: I've long since been approved for Medicare to provide (and pay for) my POC, but it is now over 9 weeks overdue since being ordered due to industry shortages from Covid. So, I'm still waiting. By the way that law is Federal and not State, I've learned. Medicare regulation too. My provider tells me they will take all my tanks but one big one (for power outages). In which case I may invest in a small generator, after last year's major winter storm and power outage, during which we nearly froze to death here when power outages were rampant and long. Anyway, I will post on my new POC when I ever get it, as well as my new home NIV ventilator. Keep us posted on how your situation develops.


        2. Hi Homey, and thanks for your post. As you may be aware, COPD affects every patient differently. I have provided care to patients who do well with the pulse flow of oxygen while still others, do better with continuous flow systems.
          Perhaps early on, the pulse system satisfied your (oxygen) needs. It is also possible that now, your condition may have changed to the point of requiring continuous flow to make you feel comfortable.
          You are the best judge of just how you are feeling with supplemental oxygen in place. You may want to discuss this further with your physician. Both you and the doctor can collaboratively decide which device will be best for you.
          Please do check back and let us know how this all turns out for you.
          Good luck!
          Leon (site moderator COPD.net)

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