Pulse Oximeter, is an easy, helpful tool to measure blood oxygen level at respiratory emergency.
Now, as we are facing COVID 19 as a pandemic, we should collect a pulse oximetry for home whoever can afford.
What Is Pulse Oximetry?
Pulse oximetry, or pulse ox is a quick and needle-free test that measures the amount of oxygen in your blood.
It shows whether your heart and lungs supply enough to meet your body’s needs.
Red blood cells carry oxygen from our lungs to the organs. But lung or heart disease can lower the amount of
oxygen in these cells. If it drops too low, your body doesn’t work as well as it should our heart, brain, and
other organs need oxygen to do their job. Your doctor can use this test to find out if you need to breathe in
extra oxygen through a tube (your doctor may call it supplemental oxygen) or to be treated for a heart or
Why Would I Need This Test?
Diagnose symptoms like shortness of breath
Monitor oxygen level during surgical procedure.
Track your blood oxygen level during surgery
Manage a heart or lung condition that could affect your blood oxygen levels, like heart failure, COPD, asthma
or pneumonia.Can diagnose acute respiratory distress syndrome (which also associated with COVID 19)
Show if you need extra oxygen when you exercise. Show whether your breathing stops while you sleep, a
condition called sleep apnea. If you already use supplemental oxygen, you can do this test at home to make
sure your oxygen flow is OK.
Procedure usually done During the Test:
Your nurse will put a small, clip-like device called a pulse oximeter on your finger, toe, or ear. Or they’ll put a
sticky disposable probe on your finger, nose, toe, or forehead. The pulse oximeter uses a special type of light
to see how much oxygen is in the red blood cells traveling through the blood vessels under your skin.
The test is painless and quick. In just a few seconds, the device will show your heart rate and oxygen
saturation level the percentage of your red blood cells carrying oxygen. It also measures your heart rate.
Your nurse will take the clip off if it’s just a one-time check. During surgery or a sleep study, it may stay in
place to track your blood oxygen.
You should be able to go home after pulse oximetry, unless you need to stay in the hospital for a procedure
or more monitoring.
How Do You Prepare?
You don’t have to do anything special to get ready for this test.
The test results might not be correct if your fingers are dirty, your nails are too long, or if your nails are
covered in dark polish. The nurse may ask you to wash your hands, take your nail polish off, or trim the
nail on the finger they’re testing.
Ask your nurse if you have any questions or concerns.
What Do the Results Mean?
A blood oxygen level lower than 89% means you may not have enough oxygen in your blood to meet your
body’s needs. This could be because there’s a problem with your heart or lungs.
If your levels are low, you may need to breathe in extra oxygen through a tube.
How Much Does It Cost?
Your doctor usually bills pulse oximetry as part of surgery or other tests they do. You can buy home pulse
oximeters online or at a drugstore.