The current and future status of portable oxygen concentrators.

I remember attending a pulmonary conference in the early 1980s when

I was still in New Jersey. A guest speaker at the conference came in

with what looked like a Samsonite suitcase on a wheeled cart. It weighed

more than 20 pounds and was powered by a marine type battery. It was the

first portable oxygen concentrator (POC) we ever saw, and we were in

awe.

Just 10 years earlier, some of the first oxygen concentrators were

being introduced, and those weighed close to 150 pounds and used tons of

electricity with substantial noise and heat production. The oxygen

production was also poor, around 40 to 50 percent. We were