A handheld pulse oximeter is one of those things you never knew you needed until it suddenly became essential. You might think you already have one, but do you really? If you don't, here are some reasons why you should have one.
First off, what exactly is a pulse oximeter? Pulse oximeters measure oxygen saturation levels in the bloodstream. In layman's terms, it's a small device that measures how well-oxygenated blood flows throughout the body. This information helps doctors determine whether people are experiencing hypoxia or low levels of oxygen in the bloodstream.
How Does It Work?
Basically, there are two main components to a pulse oximeter. First, there's a sensor that attaches to the finger or toe. Then, there's an LED light source that shines onto the skin. When the light hits the skin, it bounces back to the sensor, where it's converted into electrical signals. Those signals are sent to a monitor which calculates the amount of oxygen saturation in the blood. From there, the data is displayed on a screen.
Why Do I Need One?
Suppose you suffer from chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), sleep apnea, asthma, congestive heart failure, diabetes, or emphysema. In that case, you probably already know that breathing problems can make everyday tasks like walking up stairs or talking difficult. But did you know that poor lung function can affect your brain too? Studies show that patients with COPD experience cognitive impairment, including memory loss, attention deficits, and impaired decision-making. These symptoms often go unnoticed because many people with COPD aren't aware that they even have the disease. However, a pulse oximeter could help you detect issues before any damage occurs.
Pulse oximeters provide vital information about the patient's health status. They are very useful in breathing emergencies, where immediate treatment is needed. In fact, a pulse oximeter is often one of the most important medical tools in use today.
There are a few different brands of pulse oximeters on the market today, but they all work the same. They are relatively inexpensive. Here are a few things to keep in mind when purchasing one:
Make sure it is "non-invasive." This means that it does not need to be placed inside a patient's body to work. (Some models need to be plugged into a vein in the patient's arm to obtain an oxygen saturation reading.)
Most models these days are "finger-tip" devices. They must be placed on the patient's finger to obtain a reading.
Choose one with an LCD display. They are easier to read.
Select a device that measures blood oxygen saturation along with pulse rate.
Be sure to buy batteries and a battery-powered model so that you can use it without being plugged into an outlet.
A handheld pulse oximeter is a useful tool for people who suffer from conditions that affect their breathing, such as asthma or COPD. It can also be used to monitor the oxygen levels of people who are at risk for developing respiratory problems, such as smokers or people who live in polluted areas. If you are looking for a way to improve your health and well-being, a handheld pulse oximeter is a great investment.
Check out our collection here for models that feature easy-to-read displays and are approved by the FDA.