Portable Oxygen Carry Bags: Shoulder Bags or Backpacks?

Comfort while using your portable oxygen concentrator is hugely important. The whole point of having a portable oxygen concentrator is to be able to do a lot of walking and moving around while getting your oxygen therapy. Mobile carts, shoulder bags and specially designed backpacks are the main ways to carry around your portable oxygen concentrator, without it feeling like a burden.

Are you going on vacation and need the best way to carry your portable concentrator, or are you shopping for your first portable oxygen concentrator? When you're shopping for a way to carry around your portable oxygen concentrator, there are a few key things to keep in mind.

Sometimes mobile carts are necessary for the larger, heavier portable concentrators, such as the SeQual Eclipse. The Eclipse weighs 18.4 pounds with the battery – not something anyone would want to carry around for very long, if at all.

If you need this portable concentrator because it offers the dosage setting you need, then you will need to get it with its mobile cart, which comes with it. However, some also have a protective cover available to keep your concentrator safe while it is riding along in the mobile cart.

Many of the lighter portable oxygen concentrators come with a carry bag with a should strap. These shoulder straps are padded and adjustable, to make them as comfortable for you as possible. They are specially designed to fit the concentrator, with vents and windows in the right places, so it can still function.

Some even have a Velcro-secured opening for the battery door, so you don't need to take it out of the carry bag to change out the battery. Most backpacks and protective covers also have this time-saving feature.

The strap or straps on the carry bags can also be used to carry it in three different ways, that might be better for you at different times. You can carry it from the small hand strap for a short distance, put it over your should so that it hangs down on the same side or cross it over your body, from one should down to the other hip.

Some portable concentrator models have a backpack available, which you can use instead of the carry bag that comes with it. Backpacks are ideal if you need to keep your arms free, or if a bag hanging at your side would get in the way, or become uncomfortable. For example, if you are bicycling or hiking in the woods, you'll be doing a lot of moving around with your whole body, and a bag at your side might get in the way.

Always purchase the backpack that was designed specifically for your portable oxygen concentrator model. The Respironics SimplyFlo, Inogen One G2, G3, and AirSep Freestyle all have offer backpack options if you prefer to carrying your POC on your back.

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.

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