[Efficiency of a mobile oxygen concentrator for mechanical ventilation in anesthesia. Studies with a metabolic lung model and early clinical results].Anaesthesist. 1995 Sep; 44(9):643-50.A
Oxygen (O2) for clinical application is generally provided from either a central gas supply via a hospital pipeline system or is delivered to the working place in cylinders as compressed gas. An alternative source is the one-site generation of O2 from air using O2 concentrators based on molecular sieve technology. Whereas O2 concentrators for anaesthesia in remote areas or underdeveloped countries are wide-spread, in Germany their use is common in neither hospitals nor anaesthesiological practice. The maximum O2 content produced by concentrators is 96% with about 4% argon (Ar) and minimal amounts of nitrogen and other noble gases. The total O2 production is systematically limited, and therefore, the delivered concentration decreases with higher flows. There is also a potential possibility of Ar accumulation in rebreathing anaesthesia systems with reduced fresh gas flow. We investigated the efficiency and potential disadvantages of using O2 concentrators in anaesthesia and the influence of Ar on the accuracy of anaesthetic gas monitors.