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Supplemental Oxygen


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Hi everyone,

I wanted to ask if anyone has ever had to use supplemental oxygen?

My mom has had increased shortness of breath, with levels around 90, so the onc prescribed an oxygen supply as needed.

It helps her a lot, but psychologically she feels like it means there’s no going back. She gets out of breath walking to the bathroom, etc so she uses it as needed for now.

Im just wondering if once on oxygen, is it usually downhill from there or do people bounce back from that?


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I've never had to get supplemental oxygen, but I suspect it depends on what is causing the shortness of breath and how that issue responds to treatment. For instance, if the SoB is due to a tumor's blocking the airway, shrinkage of the tumor should help. If the SoB is a side effect of treatment, then adjusting or changing the medication might help. OTOH, if the cancer is progressing, it might get worse.

Probably a question best answered by her doc--whether it's due to a condition likely to improve or get worse over time.


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@Saturn_Bound as Lexiecat said, it depends. I was on oxygen for about 6 weeks due to radiation pneumonitis. (An inflammation of the lungs caused by radiation treatment). Once that was treated with steroids, I was able to go off the oxygen.

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I was prescribed supplemental O2 after one onerous procedure to install a large stent in my trachea to bolster a surgical fistula repair. The irritation was pretty extreme and this hampered my unaided breathing. The doctor arranged delivery of supplemental O2 to my home and I stayed in the hospital until the O2 unit was delivered. After about a month, my O2 saturation levels rose above 95% and the doctor told me I could go off O2.

Do purchase a pulse oximeter from a pharmacy or Amazon. It is an invaluable device for a lung cancer survivor to own.

Stay the course.


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