Glossary Entry: Oxygen Catheter


Definition: An oxygen catheter is a medical device used to deliver oxygen directly to the respiratory system of a patient. It is commonly used in cases of respiratory distress or when a patient requires supplemental oxygen.

Detailed Description

Types and Variations

Variations: Oxygen catheters come in different sizes and materials, with variations in design to accommodate different patient needs. Some variations include nasal prongs, nasal catheters, and transtracheal catheters.


Common Uses: Oxygen catheters are commonly used in cases of COPD, pneumonia, asthma, and other respiratory conditions where the patient’s oxygen levels are low.

Insertion and Placement

Procedure: The insertion and placement of the oxygen catheter depend on the specific type being used. Nasal prongs are inserted into the nostrils, while nasal catheters are inserted through the nostrils and into the nasal passages. Transtracheal catheters are inserted directly into the trachea.

Clinical Considerations

Potential Complications

Risks: Potential complications associated with oxygen catheters include irritation or damage to the nasal passages, infections, and oxygen toxicity if too high of a flow rate is used.

Care and Maintenance

Maintenance Requirements: Oxygen catheters should be cleaned regularly and replaced as needed to prevent infections and ensure proper oxygen delivery.

Additional Information

Related Devices

Associated Terms: Oxygen concentrators, oxygen masks, and oxygen tanks are related devices commonly used in conjunction with oxygen catheters.

Innovations and Advancements

Recent Developments: Recent advancements in oxygen catheter technology have focused on improving comfort for the patient and reducing the risk of complications.

Regulatory and Safety Notes

Regulations: Usage of oxygen catheters should adhere to medical device regulations and safety guidelines to ensure proper usage and patient safety.