Summer in Phoenix is a little bit like spending six months in an oven. Many people have pools and enjoy the escape into the water. However my patients with Pulmonary Fibrosis using oxygen are often afraid to get into their pools. While this apprehension is understandable, requiring supplemental oxygen does not have to be a barrier to enjoying a dip in the pool or even aqua-aerobic. It takes a bit of creativity and some extension tubing for your oxygen.
There are two approaches to wearing oxygen in the pool.
If you have portable oxygen tanks, the easiest approach is to place the tank next to the edge of the pool (though not too close) and then run tubing while you are in the pool. If you keep your head above water you should not have any trouble with your oxygen system. Some of my more creative patients have told me about using a floating chair or inner-tube and resting their oxygen inside while they are in the pool. If you don’t have a portable tank then you can use your larger home concentrator and run long tubing to the pool. I would not place the concentrator outside but rather leave it inside the house – but as close as possible to the pool. Do not take your portable concentrator to the pool edge or try and float it inside an inner-tube. The key safety issue is to keep any power source well away from water.
Don’t let IPF prevent you from enjoying a dip in the pool.