Effects of Oxygen Enrichment Device in Lowlanders Ascending to Tibet

Guanghao Shen, Kangning Xie, Juan Liu, Yongjie Shi, Tao Lei, Yue Tian, Chi Tang, Da Jing, Xiaoming Wu, Jianbao Zhang, and Erping Luo


Medical devices, hypoxia, oxygen-enrich, high altitude


When ascending to the high altitude, people living in low altitude areas will suffer from hypoxia and acute mountain sickness. To reduce the risk of acute mountain sickness, based on the technology of oxygen concentration membrane, we developed a new portable oxygen enrichment device for individual. Eight healthy male subjects were screened and flew to Tibet (Lhasa, 3,700 m) to perform the experiment. First, subjects wore the oxygen enrichment device and performed an incremental exercise on cycle ergometer. The test included heart rate (HR), saturation of peripheral oxygen (SpO2) and physical work capacity (PWC). Then, after a rest period of 4 hours, the experimental protocol was repeated without oxygen enrichment device. The results showed that higher SpO2, lower HR, and better PWC (measured by the PWC-170) were observed from all the subjects ‘with oxygen enrichment device’ compared with ‘without oxygen enrichment device’ (P<0.01). We suggested that the new portable oxygen enrichment device would be effective in improving exercise performance when ascending to the high altitude.

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