Oxygen is one of the important things that a person needs. Without it, a person will fall ill, and eventually die. As such, it is important to ensure that there is enough oxygen that will enter the body. It can be measured by using a medical device called pulse oximeter. Pulse oximeter is designed in measuring the level of oxygen in the blood. Before, pulse oximetry is an invasive procedure that has potential risks on the patient as well as takes time before the result in the level of oxygen in the blood is revealed. With modern day pulse oximeter, it is non-invasive so there is less potential risks and the results are yielded at a faster rate.
The pulse oximeter is basically attached on one end of the finger or the earlobe, the most translucent part of a human body. Basically, when the pulse oximeter is connected on the finger’s end, the hemoglobin saturation is measured and is then compared to normal levels. Normal levels are between 95 to 100 percent saturation.
In the process, a photodiode is faced with small light emitting diodes that have different wavelengths; the first LED is infrared while the other is red. Absorption at these wavelengths is different between the deoxygenated and oxygenated blood making it easier to calculate the ratio between the two wavelengths.
The exact reading that will be measured will tell if the person needs to stop the activity he is doing or he needs to have supplemental oxygen. Before, doctors have to make the judgment, diagnosis, and evaluation based on their clinical eye; but with pulse oximeter, doctors can make accurate diagnosis and prescriptions on the patient.
There are different types of pulse oximeters available today. There is fingertip pulse oximeter which is the most widely used. Then there is also wrist, handheld, and tabletop pulse oximeter available.
One of the useful features of a portable or for home pulse oximeter is the pleth graph. The pleth graph is one of the overlooked features as well. It shows the change in volume of arterial blood with every pulse beat to show the heart beating pattern of a person. The waves will also show the irregular heartbeats and indicates the blood circulation of a patient. If the patient experience discomfort, it is important to check the pleth waveform and check with the doctor.
With the portability of pulse oximeter, many patients are able to monitor their blood oxygen saturation easily. Aside from that, there are many benefits that people can get from this small medical device. It gives faster and more accurate results and help doctors make the right diagnosis.
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