If you are looking for a pulse oximeter, you need to research them out before purchasing one. You are going to have many to choose from, so you want to get one that is going to suit your needs and wants.

pulse-oximeter

Summary

A pulse oximeter is a noninvasive way for monitoring a person’s oxygen saturation. The reading of the device is not always an identical to the reading of SaO2 from arterial blood gas analysis. It is a safe, convenient, noninvasive and inexpensive pulse oximetry method that is going to be valuable for measuring oxygen saturation in clinical use.In its most common mode, a sensor device is placed on a thin part of your body (most likely your fingertip or earlobe).

Function

A pulse oximeter is going to display the percentage of blood that is loaded with oxygen, meaning that it is going to measure what percentage of hemoglobin, the protein in blood that carries oxygen, is loaded. Normal ranges for patients that are good without pulmonary pathology are from 95% to 99%. A oximeter uses an electronic processor and a pair of small light-emitting diodes facing a photodiode through a translucent part of the patient’s body (again, fingertip or an earlobe).

Indications

A pulse oximeter is a medical device that indirectly monitors the oxygen saturation of a patient’s blood. The oximeter may be incorporated into a multiparameter patient monitor. Most of the monitors are also going to display the pulse rate of the person the oximeter is put on. Portable, battery-operated oximeters are also available for transport or home blood-oxygen monitoring.

Advantages

A pulse oximeter is convenient for noninvasive continuous measurement of blood oxygen saturation. Oximeters are useful in any setting where a person’s oxygenation is unstable, including intensive care, operating, recovery, emergency and hospital ward settings, for assessment of any patient’s oxygenation and determining need for supplemental oxygen. A oximeter is used to monitor oxygenation but it cannot determine the amount of oxygen being used by a person. It can also be used to detect abnormalities in ventilation. The use of an oximeter to detect hypoventilation is impaired with the use of supplemental oxygen.

Pulse oximeters are of importance in emergency medicine and are also very useful for people with respiratory or cardiac problems, such as people with:

  • COPD
  • Apnea and

Portable pulse oximeters are also useful for mountain climbers and athletes whose oxygen levels may decrease at high altitudes or with exercise.

Limitations

Pulse oximeters measures hemoglobin saturation, not ventilation. By using the device it is not going to give you a complete measure of respiratory sufficiency. Erroneously low readings may be caused by:

  • Hypoperfusion of the extremity being used for monitoring (often due to a limb being cold, or from vasoconstriction secondary to the use of vasopressor agents)
  • Incorrect sensor application
  • Highly calloused skin
  • Movement

To make sure the Pulse oximeter is ready accurately, you need ensure that the sensor should return a steady pulse and/or pulse waveform.

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