User Question: What Concentrator Can Be Used with a CPAP Machine?

A user recently asked this question: Which oxygen concentrator can be used with a continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) machine? We thought it would be an excellent opportunity to answer this specific question but also expand on it a bit to address the overall subject of using oxygen with CPAP.

Let us begin by briefly exploring the need for a CPAP machine, then discuss why you might need to use oxygen with CPAP, and finally address the process of connecting an oxygen concentrator to your CPAP machine.

A Brief Overview of Sleep Apnea and the Need for Supplemental Oxygen

Sleep apnea is an umbrella term that includes both central and obstructive sleep apnea. Of the 2 types of sleep apnea, obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) is by far the most common.

If you have already been diagnosed with obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) by your doctor, you probably also have a CPAP machine to use at night during sleep. A CPAP machine’s core function is to prevent the collapse of your airway while sleeping using pressurized air. However, the pressurized air still retains the normal concentration of oxygen as regular air, which is 21% oxygen.

Untreated OSA can lead to serious complications in the future, but the immediate result of OSA is a persistent lack of oxygen during sleep. If your doctor has determined that your oxygen levels drop too low or too often while you sleep, even while using a CPAP machine, they might also prescribe supplemental oxygen to be used in conjunction with your CPAP machine to keep your oxygen levels normal. This is achieved by "bleeding-in" oxygen into your CPAP system to increase the percentage of oxygen to greater than 21%.

If you have gotten this far in your therapy, but are wondering how a CPAP machine would work at the same time with your oxygen concentrator, the answer to this question is very straightforward.

How to Connect Your Oxygen Concentrator to Your CPAP Machine

The model of your concentrator does not determine whether or not it will work with a CPAP machine. As long as it has the oxygen dosage setting you need, your oxygen concentrator will work with your CPAP. The determining factor of how you will use oxygen with your CPAP machine is the type of mask and/or CPAP tubing you are using.

Most standard CPAP nose masks have a bleed-in port directly on the mask that will allow you to attach oxygen tubing from the oxygen concentrator right to your mask. When not in use, you can easily cap this port and use your CPAP without oxygen again.

However, some masks do not have this bleed-in port directly on the mask. Luckily, there is another way you can connect your oxygen concentrator to your CPAP machine: using an oxygen bleed-in adapter.

An oxygen bleed-in adapter is simply a small plastic adapter that you would place in-line between the CPAP tubing and your CPAP machine. The adapter has a small port where you can attach oxygen tubing from your oxygen concentrator, and bleed-in oxygen into your CPAP system. For entire the procedure on how to place this adapter into almost any CPAP machine, visit our Connect a CPAP Machine to Your Oxygen Concentrator” how-to page.

Instructions: How To Connect a CPAP Machine to Your Oxygen Concentrator

There is another necessary procedure to follow when turning both machines on and off.

Always make sure to turn on the CPAP machine first—before the oxygen concentrator. When you are done using them, the oxygen concentrator should be turned off first, then turn off the CPAP machine. The reason for this procedure is because high oxygen concentrations can cause damage to the CPAP machine over time.

Final Thoughts

Hopefully, you can now see how easy it is to use oxygen with CPAP, regardless of the oxygen concentrator brand you are already using. With a small adapter (or the port already on your mask) and oxygen tubing, you can easily connect these two devices and go about getting a good night’s sleep.

Updated: August 30, 2019
Published: December 30, 2015

About Scott Ridl: Scott joined American Medical Sales and Rentals in 2008 as a Web Manager and Content Writer. He is a writer and designer. He is extensively trained on oxygen therapy products from leading manufacturers such as Inogen, Respironics, Chart, Invacare, ResMed and more. Scott works closely with respiratory therapists and oxygen specialists to educate the community about oxygen therapy products, COPD, asthma and lung diseases. He writes weekly columns and is passionate about educating the community on oxygen therapy and respiratory issues.

24 thoughts on “User Question: What Concentrator Can Be Used with a CPAP Machine?”

  • Judith demkowicz
    Judith demkowicz July 18, 2017 at 7:28 am

    Do you sell continuous flow poc?
    Do ypi sell a comtinuous flow poc?

    Reply
    • Danielle Jason
      Danielle Jason July 19, 2017 at 4:08 am

      Thank you for your comment, Judith. We do, in fact, sell continuous flow portable oxygen concentrators. For more information, including the most up-to-date pricing, contact our Oxygen Specialists at 877-774-9271 or via email at [email protected]

      Reply
  • Pam Smith

    Can I just purchase an new mask that will attach to both my oxygen and my CPAP?

    Reply
    • Danielle Jason

      Absolutely, Pam. As long as you have a prescription from your doctor that indicates your need for Sleep Apnea equipment you can absolutely purchase a new mask. If you reach out to one of our Oxygen Specialists at 877-774-9271 they can discuss the various mask types and pricing options!

      Reply
  • Arthur Stowell
    Arthur Stowell May 12, 2018 at 3:05 pm

    Hello, will my INOGEN G4 work with my CPAP machine. I just bought a portable oxygen generator and hoping to replace the big, noisey home one. Thank you. Arthur

    Reply
    • Margaret Goodman
      Margaret Goodman May 14, 2018 at 5:40 am

      For your CPAP to work with a portable oxygen concentrator you will need to have one that does continuous flow and not just the pulse dose option.

      Reply
  • Elaine Homan

    I am confused; in 2017, this blog on CPAP and portable concentrators says that you can use any type of concentrator with a cpap. However, the current blog, dated May 2018, says you can't use a pulse dose concentrator, only a continuous flow one. Which is it? I need to know if I want to take my CPAP on the trip.

    Reply
    • Margaret Goodman
      Margaret Goodman May 25, 2018 at 8:19 am

      In order to run your CPAP you must have a machine that provides continuous flow oxygen.

      Reply
    • Robert byland
      Robert byland July 12, 2018 at 7:10 am

      Which portable cpap units can work with a portable o2 concentrator.

      Reply
      • Margaret Goodman
        Margaret Goodman July 17, 2018 at 10:13 am

        Thank you for your inquiry. I have passed along your information to a specialist who will reach out regarding your request. For more immediate assistance feel free to give our specialists a call at 888-360-9628 or if you prefer email [email protected]

        Reply
  • Raymond Balta

    Can a POC Portable Oxygen Concentrator be used for my sleep apnea(2%oxygen) and also during the day. Is it dual purpose, for sleep and awake?

    Reply
    • Margaret Goodman
      Margaret Goodman July 17, 2018 at 11:07 am

      It can if you have a continuous flow oxygen concentrator. Please contact us at 888-360-9628 to have a specialist walk you through this.

      Reply
  • Pam Barta

    My husband has to have a CPAP machine with Oxygen. The Oxygen unit is heavy and on rollers. My question if we want to travel is their a continuous flow portable oxygen unit compatible with his CPAP machine.

    Reply
    • Margaret Goodman
      Margaret Goodman July 24, 2018 at 6:44 am

      Thank you for your inquiry. I have passed along your information to a specialist who will reach out regarding your request. For more immediate assistance feel free to give our specialists a call at 888-360-9628 or if you prefer email [email protected]

      Reply
  • patrice morrow

    I have a ResMed AirCure 10. And now I need Oxygen at night. My doctor said an Oxygen concentrator is heavy and noisy. I wonder if some of these new one are less so. I travel and need to take at lease the CPAC along.Does Medicare cover
    oxygen concentrators, at least in part?

    Reply
    • Margaret Goodman
      Margaret Goodman August 27, 2018 at 7:43 am

      Thank you for your inquiry. I have passed along your information to a specialist who will reach out regarding your request. For more immediate assistance feel free to give our specialists a call at 888-360-9628 or if you prefer email [email protected]

      Reply
  • Yolanda

    Can I use my heated humidifier on my cpap machine with oxygen? Also what type of tubing do I need to connect oxygen to my bleed in adapter? Thanks

    Reply
    • Margaret Goodman
      Margaret Goodman January 7, 2019 at 6:36 am

      Yes, you can use a heated humidifier with your CPAP and oxygen. They type of tubing you need will need to be open on both ends. If you use require over 5LPM, then you will need to make sure that you have high flow tubing.

      Reply
  • James E Collins
    James E Collins April 14, 2019 at 6:11 am

    I am on oxygen and have a house machine, for travel I have a Inogen g3. At home I have a ResMes air 10 CPAP and a SoClean also. For travel I got the ResMed AirMini how can I connect the inogen g3 to the ResMed AirMini? Is there an adapter I need, where do I find it
    Thank you

    Reply
    • Ed Rodgers

      There is an adapter available. But the products you are using might be incompatible so it might be best to call us to discuss the adapter and how this may (or may not ) be the best option. Give us a call at 877-303-9289

      Reply
  • Nancy Jones

    Where do I order an adapter for my inogen continous concentrator to c-pap machine?

    Reply
    • Ed Rodgers

      We can help you and get one ordered. Call us at 855-838-0926 and one of our specialists can get one shipped to you.

      Reply
  • Gary Bressler
    Gary Bressler June 14, 2019 at 1:49 pm

    I'm in need of a portable oxygen machine that will attach to my CPAP for travel purposes. I'm on 2% oxygen now.

    Reply
    • Ed Rodgers

      Hi Gary,
      There are several options that can be used. The best way to narrow the search and find the make and model that will be best, you should speak to one of our oxygen specialists at 888-616-6423 who can help you understand your presciption and options that will work best for you. Good luck!

      Reply

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