Oxygen therapy

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Standard Administration Options

Device L/min % Oxygen Comments
Nasal Cannula 1 24%
2 28%
3 32%
4 36%
5 40%
6 44%
Venturi mask 24-50% Increasing flow will not alter FiO2
Oxygen tent 10-15 21-50% Used mainly on children with croup or pneumonia
Simple mask 5-15 35-55% Never used at flows less than 5 L/min to prevent rebreathing of CO2
Trach mask 10-15 35-60% Adequate flow shown by mist flowing out the exhalation port at all times
Partial rebreathing mask 8-15 35-60% Flow rate must be sufficient to keep bag 1/3 to 1/2 inflated at all times
Aerosol mask 8-15 21-99%
Non-rebreathing mask 8-15 (or max) 60-99% Flow rate must be sufficient to keep bag 1/3 to 1/2 inflated at all times

Hyperbaric Oxygen (HBO)

  • Two methods of administration[1]
    1. Small, single-occupant chamber filled with 100% oxygen and pressurized to desired level
    2. Large, multi-occupant chamber filled with room air and pressurized to desired level - occupants breathe supplemental oxygen at ambient pressure via mask
  • Rationale for use[1]
    • At normal pressures (even with supplemental oxygen administration), very little oxygen is dissolved in plasma
    • When oxygen provided at 3 ATA, there is enough oxygen dissolved in plasma to oxygenate all body tissues without resorting to hemoglobin-bound oxygen

See Also

External Links


  1. 1.0 1.1 Bitterman H. Bench-to-bedside review: Oxygen as a drug. Critical Care. 2009;13(1):205. doi:10.1186/cc7151.