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Risks of Not Having Enough Oxygen

Risks of Not Having Enough Oxygen

The Risks of Not Having Enough Oxygen

When you have a chronic lung disease, having enough oxygen is always on your mind. The Risks of Not Having Enough Oxygen include suffering from the low-oxygen conditions hypoxemia or hypoxia. Without oxygen, the brain, liver, and other organs can begin to sustain damage mere minutes after symptoms start.

Hypoxemia (low oxygen in the blood) can cause hypoxia (low oxygen in body tissues) when the blood carries insufficient oxygen to the tissues to meet the body’s needs. The word hypoxia can be used to describe both either condition.

What are the symptoms of hypoxia?

Though symptoms of hypoxia vary in individual cases, the most common hypoxia symptoms include:

  • Changes in skin color, ranging from blue to bright red
  • Confusion
  • Coughing
  • Fast heart rate
  • Rapid breathing
  • Shortness of breath
  • Sweating
  • Wheezing

If you have hypoxia symptoms, call 911.

Treating Hypoxia


A person experiencing hypoxia should go to the hospital for treatment. Someone will need to keep track of the person’s oxygen level.

It is essential to get more oxygen into the body. Oxygen will be administered through a small plug in the nose or through a mask that covers both the nose and mouth. This is usually enough to bring a person’s oxygen level up to normal.

An inhaler can make breathing easier. If these tactics fail to help, the doctor might try administering medicine intravenously. Steroid drugs may also be necessary for a short time to reduce pulmonary inflammation.

When one’s life is in danger, and other treatments aren’t working, use of supplemental oxygen may be in order.

Causes of Hypoxia



Preventing Hypoxia


The best way to prevent hypoxia is to stick with your treatment plan.

  • Take medicine every day, on schedule, to help prevent flare-ups and the need to use a rescue inhaler.
  • Eat a healthy diet, and be physically active.
  • Know your triggers, and avoid them.

Work with your doctor to develop an action plan for flare-ups. Know what to do when breathing trouble strikes.

Hypoxia occurs when there is a reduced amount of oxygen in body tissues. Hypoxemia presented in COPD is relatively easy to correct with relatively small amounts of supplemental oxygen. Cellular therapy may help promote healing and better lung function before the onset of severe problems such as hypoxia.

If you have a chronic lung condition, you may qualify for cellular therapy at the Lung Institute. Contact us online, or call one of our patient coordinators at (800) 729-3065 to find out if you qualify.


  1. sh

    2 years ago

    Hello, Debbie. Thank you for your comment. As always, we recommend you consult your physician before starting, stopping, or altering any treatment plan. We’re glad to hear you haven’t been experiencing coughing or wheezing. Wishing you good health.

    The Lung Institute.

  2. Debbie

    2 years ago

    When someone has copd ( emphysema)
    Can it be harmful to use oxygen when ever. In other words there has been no activity they are just sitting no coughing no wheezing and they haven’t use there rescue inhaler only leaves it on for less than 10 min
    Thank you

  3. PB

    2 years ago

    Dear Sharon,

    We’re sorry to hear that you’ve been going through such a difficult time with COPD and weight. Unfortunately, many people with COPD and other lung diseases have similar problems with breathing and weight. You can check out some of our blog articles for ideas on foods to try. Because your doctor know you best, it’s important to discuss your questions and concerns with him or her before trying something new or changing your treatment plan. If you’re interested in learning more about possible cellular treatment options, feel free to contact us today at (855) 313-1149 to speak with one of our patient coordinators. We look forward to speaking with you soon.

    Best Regards,

    The Lung Institute

  4. Sharon Williams

    2 years ago

    Also, I never get hungry with my COPD and have lost so much weight! What should I be eating to put weight back on me. I normally weigh 150. But I’m now down to 130. I’m eating protein along with other stuff but can’t put weight on. I just feel like giving up because there’s nothing worse than not being able to breathe!

  5. Becky Henderson

    2 years ago

    Unfortunately, most of us aren’t wealthy, so we are sentenced to death for being poverty stricken. Life and death, both a struggle.

  6. PB

    2 years ago

    Hi Tim,

    Thanks for your comment and question. Unfortunately, at this time, insurance companies don’t cover treatment. However, we’re hopeful that treatment will be covered by insurance companies in the near future. Keep in mind that it will take some time before the insurance companies see a financial benefit in their favor and then decide to cover it. In the meantime, you can learn more about possible cellular treatment options and have your questions answered by one of our patient coordinators. Feel free to contact us at (855) 313-1149 for more information. We look forward to hearing from you soon.

    Best Regards,

    The Lung Institute

  7. Tim

    2 years ago

    Why doesn’t insurance coverage it it would be less problems down the road later? ? And save money

  8. PB

    2 years ago

    Dear Karen,

    While at this time insurance companies don’t cover treatment, we’re hopeful that treatment will be covered by insurance companies in the near future. To learn more about possible cellular treatment options and to have your questions answered one-on-one, please feel free to contact one of our qualified patient coordinators today by calling (855) 313-1149. We look forward to hearing from you soon.

    Best Regards,

    The Lung Institute

  9. Karen

    2 years ago

    Sure wish I was able to go here. But I don’t have insurance. I know I would be able to get new lungs . Can some please let me know what I have to do to get here thanks

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