Pulse oximeters have been flying off the shelves during the COVID-10 pandemic. Today we are here to decode how they work.
People with COVID-19 often need oxygenation support, so this tool, a staple for many doctors, has become something of necessity for the layperson. Oximeters have been flying off the shelves for many households’ first aid kits, largely because they are non-invasive, low-cost, easy to use, and effective at detecting hypoxemia.
Device you must know
It comprises a monitor which contains the batteries and display, a probe which consists of light emitting diodes or LEDs and a light detector called a photo-detector. This probe senses the user’s pulse.
There are two important readings: the pulse rate, recorded as beats per minute( 60 to 100 is the safe range), and the oxygen saturation of haemoglobin in atrial blood, the reading of which is recorded as (SpO2). Normal readings range from 95% to 100%, anything less and the user should get a medical assistance from a doctor. If your oximeter has alarms, a typical readings will set them off.
How to use it
The mechanism clips onto the user’s forefinger, though some oximeters have been to clipped onto one’s big toe or even the ear, depending on the model. According to the World Health Organization’s Pulse Oximetry Training Manual, one must use the oximeter with patience. Once clipped on, it requires about 10 seconds to get an accurate reading.
One cannot use the pulse oximeter as a sole detector for any respiratory issues. It is only meant to give readings for a small time interval.
When buying an oximeter, do be wary of the brand names. There are oximeters selling on e-commerce platforms that will work for a month at most before giving out, and may cost as much as 2000 rupees.
We would suggest going to your pharmacy. Most pharmacies have partnered with legitimate names in the medical device sub-industry to provide cost-effective and reliable pulse oximeters.
Hope you enjoyed reading this article. This article is a complete guide to pulse oximeter and how does it. Here we have tried our best to decode the buzzwords in health and wellness.
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