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Why Do Some People Need to Bleed in Oxygen into their CPAP Therapy?

Patients with Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA), COPD (Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease) or other pulmonary insufficiencies are required to use oxygen therapy. The therapy is generally delivered through a CPAP machine (Continuous Positive Airway Pressure) with continuous flow.

  • The CPAP machine will pump therapeutic quality oxygen into the mouth, or nose and mouth of the patient – depending on the type of CPAP mask they use
  • Typically the CPAP machine will take ambient air, pressurize it, run it through special filters to keep outside bacteria and allergens and then delivers this oxygen to the patient

However, some patients require supplemental oxygen into their lungs during therapy and this is when a special oxygen bleed in adapter will be attached to the CPAP machine. This bleed in adapter will help transferring oxygen from the supply to the patient through the CPAP device.

The oxygen bleed in adapter can be attached easily to the oxygen tubing; patients just need to pay special attention to the instructions in the manufacturer’s leaflet. After the adapter has been attached properly, patients need to turn on their CPAP device and then turn on the oxygen unit.


  • Major CPAP device manufacturers such as Philips Respironics warn that while the oxygen flows into the CPAP unit this should never be turned on or off. Make sure to read carefully installation and operation directions when you need to use a bleed in adaptor with your oxygen therapy.
  • When CPAP machines are used with an oxygen bleed in adaptor, the machine should be kept away from sources of heat at all times. Smoking anywhere near the CPAP machine while this is in function is strictly prohibited.
  • CPAP machines equipped with a humidifier help patients avoid dry throat, mouth or nose syndrome. This humidifier can be used regardless of whether patients operate the bleed in adaptor on their machine or not.
  • Patients requiring supplemental oxygen will be advised to use a bled in adaptor with their CPAP machine. Patients with the following conditions are most likely to require supplemental oxygen systems:

    • COPD (Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease) patients
    • Lung cancer patients
    • Emphysema patients
    • Patients who have critically low levels of oxygen in their bloodstream during sleep

    Currently there are plenty innovative CPAP masks available on the market, which feature an oxygen adaptor. If your CPAP mask is equipped with such a special oxygen port, all you have to do is connect the oxygen tubing.

    If our CPAP mask does not have such an inbuilt feature, you need to purchase a separate bleed in adaptor which is compatible with your CPAP machine. The oxygen will be delivered to you through the CPAP tube.

    For many patients complaining not enough oxygen gets into their lungs, such a bleed in adaptor might resolve the situation. These patients might struggle with low oxygen levels in their blood stream and they require more oxygen of therapeutic quality from an external source. Modern CPAP machines prepare the oxygen to be inhaled from the ambient air.

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    Houston, TX 77027
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    (281) 501-7969

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