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FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

Q: What is Pulse Oximetry?
Pulse Oximetry is a simple, painless and fast test that measures the current oxygen levels in your blood. Such device is also used to check the health of a person with any condition that affects blood oxygen levels, such as pneumonia, asthma, lung cancer, etc.

Q: Pulse Oximetry & Covid-19
Lung problems like pneumonia and respiratory failure can be some of the most severe symptoms of COVID-19. Knowing how your lungs are doing could help calm a lot of nerves. Recently, there has been an gain in traction advising use of a pulse oximeter to monitor oxygen levels at home.

Q: Is it safe to use a Pulse Oximeter?
A pulse oximeter, also called a "pulse ox," painlessly clips to your finger and uses light to determine the percentage of oxygen in your blood and your heart rate. 

Q: Who would benefit the most from a Pulse Oximeter?
Pulse oximetry is also used to check the health of a person with any condition that affects blood oxygen levels, such as:

- Heart attack
- Heart failure
- Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD)
- Anemia
- Lung cancer
- Asthma
- Pneumonia

Q: Why should I use a Pulse Oximeter?
Pulse oximeters may be used to see if there is enough oxygen in the blood. This information is needed in many kinds of situations. It may be used:

- During or after surgery or procedures that use sedation
- To see how well lung medicines are working
- To check a person’s ability to handle increased activity levels
- To see if a ventilator is needed to help with breathing, or to see how well it’s working
- To check a person has moments when breathing stops during sleep (sleep apnea).

Q: How has a Pulse Oximeter helped those with ashthma?
People with heart or breathing problems can rely on personal finger pulse oximeters to help them manage these conditions under physician guidance. For example, individuals with asthma can leverage personal oximeters to assess the severity of attacks and exacerbations. Accurate pulse rate and SpO2 readings are particularly important for patients who are physically active or experiencing frequent drops in oxygen levels.

Q: How has a Pulse Oximeter helped those COPD or other respiratory diseases?
For people with COPD, asthma or other lung diseases who want to stay active, the quality of their pulse oximeter is incredibly important. Fast, reliable oximeter readings play an essential role in helping patients adjust their oxygen flow when exercising, participating in social activities or spending time at home. High-quality monitoring devices can also help physicians with monitoring the efficacy of treatment efforts and respond quickly if the condition worsens. Having your own personal pulse oximeter can be a great thing!

Q: What is the safe range for my oxygen saturation?
Experts tend to agree that the 95 to 99% is the acceptable range for those without an existing respiratory condition. A comprehensive 2002 study titled “Utility of pulse oximetry in diagnosing pneumonia” concluded that if blood oxygen saturation levels fall more than 3% from your typical baseline AND under 94% in total it would be strongly indicative of pneumonia.

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