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Refrigeration/Oxygen Tent, England, 1950-1965

The canopy of this oxygen tent is made of transparent PVC. It could be rigged on a frame, suspended over a hospital bed and tucked underneath the mattress, with zipped openings giving access to the patient. The tent cooled patients and was also used for oxygen therapy. A compressor-powered refrigeration unit was positioned beside the bed and a cooling cabinet fitted under it. The cooling system is hermetically sealed and contains liquid Freon, the same coolant used in domestic refrigerators of the 1950s. In the 1950s, oxygen therapy treated respiratory diseases such as bronchitis, asthma, croup and tracheitis. The tent was manufactured by Oxygenaire Limited of Basingstoke, Hampshire, England. It was used at the Farnborough Hospital at Orpington in Kent.

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Glossary: oxygen therapy

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Glossary: oxygen tent

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