What Is the Most Common Hypoxia Treatment?

The most common hypoxia treatment involves giving a patient oxygen.
Blockage caused by blood clots may cause hypoxia.
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  • Written By: Erin J. Hill
  • Edited By: Bronwyn Harris
  • Last Modified Date: 10 September 2014
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The most common hypoxia treatment will vary, based on the individual patient and the reasons behind his or her hypoxia. There are various conditions which can lead to hypoxia, each one requiring a particular treatment plan. One common hypoxia treatment used for various causes is to give the patient large amounts of oxygen to return levels in the blood to normal. This will be followed by individualized treatments for the underlying cause of the hypoxia.

Hypoxia is a condition in which a bodily system is deprived of oxygen for extended periods of time. This can lead to cell deaths in that area, often resulting in permanent damage or even death. The most common type of hypoxia is of the brain and this occurs when an individual isn’t able to breathe enough oxygen due to other fumes or gases being in the air, lack of available oxygen in higher elevations, or the inability to absorb oxygen from the lungs due to illness.

When a patient is suffering from this condition, the most common hypoxia treatment is to give him plenty of oxygen in order to restore the body’s balance. If the condition was caused by higher elevations or another temporary cause, this may be the only treatment needed if no further damage is done. Tests will likely be conducted to verify brain activity and to check for any complications. Often, if there is brain damage, it may be irreversible.

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There are also many conditions which may result in hypoxia. Anything which can cause lung restriction and trouble breathing is associated with an increased risk, including asthma and cancers of the lungs. The most common hypoxia treatment for lung conditions is to remove any blockages so that the patient may breathe better, either through medication or surgery, and sometimes hook the patient to an oxygen supply to ensure he or she is getting adequate amounts. In some severe cases, a ventilator may be required.

Strokes are another cause of lowered oxygen levels. The most common hypoxia treatment in this case is to find the blockage leading to the brain and remove it. Typically, the blockage is caused by a blood clot or hardened arteries that blood can no longer flow through efficiently. Clot-removing medications can sometimes dissolve or break up the clot. Drugs such as aspirin may also help alleviate stroke-induced hypoxia by thinning the blood and allowing it to flow more freely through tight arteries. Follow-up care must be implemented to get to the root of the stroke, which is commonly caused by high cholesterol or high blood pressure.

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serenesurface
Post 2

My grandmother has severe COPD, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, thanks to forty years of cigarette smoking.

She has trouble breathing, she's always short of breath and the doctor has had to put her on oxygen therapy to treat her hypoxia. She has a portable oxygen system that she carries around with her and she completely depends on it.

Unfortunately, her COPD has gotten quite bad and there isn't much else the doctors can do for her. She just has to stick to the oxygen to prevent hypoxia and the complications it brings.

turquoise
Post 1

I completely agree that the treatment for hypoxia requires removing the cause, whatever that might be.

In my case, I was suffering from hypoxia due to sleep apnea. I couldn't get enough oxygen at night because of snoring and my breathing stopping. I used to wake up at least two or three times coughing and trying to breathe again. This continued for several years until I got a CPAP machine.

CPAP stands for continuous positive airway pressure. It's a machine that sends constant pressure to the airways at night to make sure they remain open. Since I've started using CPAP, I haven't been breathless at night and my hypoxia has resolved itself.

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