Emergency Oxygen provides the critical bridge needed until EMS arrives. The following quotes from the American Heart and ECC 2010 guidelines stress the importance of this lifesaving aid.


OXYGEN for Extended CPR


How can bystander CPR be effective without rescue breathing? Initially during SCA with VF, rescue breaths are not as important as chest compressions because the oxygen level in the blood remains adequate for the first several minutes after cardiac arrest… However, at some time during prolonged CPR, supplementary oxygen with assisted ventilation is necessary. The precise interval for which the performance of Hands-Only CPR is acceptable is not known at this time.



Oxygen should be provided to all patients with severe asthma, even those with normal oxygenation. Patients with severe life-threatening asthma require urgent and aggressive treatment with simultaneous administration of oxygen, bronchodilators, and steroids.

Acute Coronary Syndrome


“Oxygen should be administered to patients with breathlessness, signs of heart failure, shock, or an arterial oxyhemoglobinsaturation <94% (Class I, LOE C). Noninvasive monitoring of blood oxygen saturation can be useful.”



“Patients with acute stroke are at risk for respiratory compromise from aspiration, upper airway obstruction, hypoventilation, and (rarely) neurogenic pulmonary edema. The combination of poor perfusion and hypoxemia will exacerbate and extend ischemic brain injury and has been associated with worse outcome from stroke.45 Both out-of-hospital and in-hospital medical personnel should administer supplemental oxygen to hypoxemic (ie, oxygen saturation <94%) stroke patients (Class I, LOE C) or those with unknown oxygen saturation.”