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November 3, 1962

Oxygen Therapy

JAMA. 1962;182(5):593. doi:10.1001/jama.1962.03050440085025

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To the Editor:—  The article on "Comparative Evaluation of Oxygen Therapy Techniques," by Kory and associates (JAMA179:767 [March 10] 1962) may lead many to the erroneous opinion that the so-called nasal cannula is an effective technique for oxygen therapy.For one thing, the authors do not detail their method of taking end-expiratory (alveolar air) samples. It would make quite a difference whether the subjects exhaled these samples from the mouth, nose, or directly from a sampling tube with its tip in the bronchi, as was done by Wineland and Waters in 1931. If sampling is done from nose or mouth, incoming oxygen would contaminate the exhaled air, giving a false high reading. Perhaps the authors can clear up this point. Secondly, this series of tests was done with nasopharyngeal oxygen catheters, not with an oropharyngeally placed catheter delivery tip. Waters has long emphasized that the delivery tip of

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