A Quick Guide to Pulse Oximetry Monitors

Pulse oximetry monitors measure the oxygen level in blood. Medical care teams regularly use pulse oximeters when monitoring a patient’s blood oxygen levels, such as during physicals, during surgery, or when checking the effects of medicine. Find out what you need to know in this quick guide to pulse oximetry monitors.

Monitoring Blood Oxygen Levels

Maintaining healthy oxygen levels, also called blood oxygen saturation, is necessary for your body to function properly. When you inhale air through your nose or mouth, oxygen passes through your lungs and into your bloodstream. Next, the bloodstream circulates oxygen throughout your body to your cells. Then, the cells use oxygen to harness energy in a process called cellular respiration.

Low blood oxygen levels can lead to serious conditions and organ damage. Low saturation indicates an issue in the patient’s lungs or circulatory system, and sometimes both.

How Oximeters Works

Pulse oximeters are safe, quick, and accurate tools for measuring oxygen saturation when used correctly. The oximeter is generally shaped like a clip and attaches painlessly to the body.

A medical professional can attach the oximeter to a patient’s finger, forehead, nose, foot, ear, or toe. The best place to attach the sensor depends on the patient’s condition. For example, if the patient has poor blood circulation in their fingers, toes, or ears, the medical team will typically apply a forehead sensor. The most common placement is over a finger.

The oximeter passes small beams of light through the blood in the patient’s finger. Then, it measures changes in light absorption in oxygenated and deoxygenated blood to measure oxygen saturation.

How Pulse Oximeters Help

Pulse oximetry readings alert physicians to poor oxygen saturation and facilitate responsive treatment. Medical professionals can monitor patients with conditions, such as asthma, lung cancer, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, and anemia, that affect blood oxygen levels.

Doctors can also use oximeters to gauge how well therapy or medication works. For example, pulse oximetry readings can help doctors evaluate the effectiveness of a ventilator or supplemental oxygen therapy.

As this quick guide to pulse oximetry monitors shows, the device helps healthcare professionals provide quality care to patients. All States M.E.D. carries a selection of accurate and reliable blood pressure equipment for sale. Shop for ophthalmoscopes, blood pressure monitors, and blood oxygen saturation monitors today.