Medically the review by Deborah Weatherspoon, Ph.D., R.N., CRNA — composed by Aimee Eyvazzadeh, MD, MPH on march 30, 2020

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A non-rebreather mask is a medical an equipment that helps deliver oxygen in emergency situations. It consists of a confront mask connected to a reservoir bag it is filled through a high concentration of oxygen. The reservoir bag is connected to one oxygen tank.

You are watching: Difference between partial rebreather mask and non rebreather mask

The mask consist of both your nose and mouth. One-way valves protect against exhaled waiting from reentering the oxygen reservoir.

A non-rebreather mask is offered in emergency instances to avoid hypoxemia, additionally known together low blood oxygen. Problems that disrupt your lungs’ ability to absorb oxygen or her heart’s capacity to pump blood can cause low blood oxygen levels.

If your blood oxygen levels drop also low, girlfriend can construct a condition called hypoxia, whereby your necessary tissues become oxygen-deprived.

A non-rebreather mask may be provided after traumatic injury, exhilaration inhalation, or carbon monoxide poisoning to save blood oxygen levels within a normal range.

In this article, we define how non-rebreather masks work and how they different from other masks used during oxygen therapy.


How go a non-rebreather mask work?

A non-rebreather confront mask fits over your mouth and also nose and attaches through an elastic band about your head. The mask is linked to a plastic reservoir bag filled with a high concentration the oxygen. The mask has actually a one-way valve system that stays clear of exhaled oxygen from mixing with the oxygen in the reservoir bag.

When you inhale, you breath in oxygen indigenous the reservoir bag. Exhaled wait escapes through vents in the next of the mask and also goes ago into the atmosphere.

Non-rebreather masks permit you to get a higher concentration that oxygen than with standard masks. They’re generally only offered for short-term boosts in oxygenation.

Non-rebreather masks aren’t typically used because they come with numerous risks. Interruptions in airflow deserve to lead come suffocation. You have the right to potentially throttle if friend vomit if wearing the mask if you sedated or unconscious. A healthcare provider usually stays in attendance throughout use that this form mask.


A non-rebreather mask deserve to deliver between 60 percent to 80 percent oxygen at a flow rate of about 10 to 15 liters/minute (L/min). They’re advantageous in cases when human being have exceptionally low level of blood oxygen, due to the fact that they deserve to quickly provide oxygen to her blood.

A partial rebreather mask looks similar to a non-rebreather mask however contains a two-way valve in between the mask and reservoir bag. The valve allows some of her breath ago into the reservoir bag.

It’s difficult to obtain as high that a blood oxygen concentration with a partial rebreather since the oxygen concentration in the reservoir bag i do not care diluted.

Both species of masks might be offered in emergency situations. A medical skilled will identify which mask to use based upon your specific condition.


A simple face mask is usually used to deliver a short to moderate amount of oxygen. A straightforward mask contains holes on the sides to permit exhaled waiting through and also to protect against suffocation in instance of a blockage.

It have the right to deliver approximately 40 percent come 60 percent oxygen in ~ 6 come 10 L/min. It’s offered for civilization who deserve to breathe on your own yet may have low blood oxygen levels.

A straightforward face mask doesn’t deliver as high of an oxygen concentration together a non-rebreather mask but is more secure in the case of a blockage. A medical professional will do a decision of which type of oxygen shipment system is needed based upon the particular condition being treated and also blood oxygen levels.

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A rebreather mask is a misnomer and also doesn’t exist in the paper definition of oxygen therapy. The hatchet “rebreather mask” usually describes a simple mask.


Non-rebreathing masks are not available for house use. A non-rebreathing mask is expected for momentary use in instances such together transporting world to a hospital. They’re seldom used exterior of one emergency department and also should just be supplied under clinical supervision. If the oxygen flow is disrupted, it can lead come suffocation.

A doctor may recommend residence oxygen treatment to world with long-term problems like chronic obtrusive pulmonary disease, significant asthma, or cystic fibrosis.

Home oxygen therapy can be yielded through oxygen tanks or an oxygen concentrator. It’s frequently administered with nasal cannula or tubes the insert right into your nostrils. It may likewise be administered v a confront mask.