What Is A Pulse Oximeter? Pulse Oximetry & ABG Tests

What is a Pulse Oximeter?

One of the main factors that can make a planet habitable is the presence of the element oxygen in its atmosphere, which is an integral component in order for life to thrive and flourish in any given space – which in this case the terrestrial planet Earth is abundant of. Prior to the existence of the human race, humans have long been unintentionally breathing oxygen into their lungs even before the conscious discovery of the said element was made.

Oxygen is a vital constituent to all living organisms such as plants, animals, and the human race. It is no hidden secret that humans in all forms of life have to continually breathe in oxygen to sustain their lives. Heck, we can’t even last a few minutes without inhaling air.

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One can simply tell just by holding in their breath for a few seconds and realizing how impossible it is not to provide our body with the oxygen it needs. The feeling it comes with is similar to drowning in water. But in unique cases, some people cannot simply provide oxygen or are having difficulties to supply different areas of their body with sufficient oxygen in order for individual organs to function properly just by receiving air from their surroundings.

How Badly Do We Need Oxygen? 

Constantly breathing in air with your nose or mouth is the basic explanation of how oxygen is acquired from your environment. Normally we would inhale air through our nose, which will then allow the air to be filtered by certain structures in the nasal cavity before it proceeds to the lungs. But in some cases, other people find it difficult to breathe with their noses and instead make use of their mouths. Air obtained will then move forward to the windpipe or known as the trachea which will then transport the air to the lungs wherein the oxygen will be collected or absorbed by red blood cells.

What Is A Pulse Oximeter? Pulse Oximetry & ABG Tests

Haemoglobin is an element found in red blood cells that actually carries oxygen and delivers it to different parts of the body. As mentioned above, some people suffer from a lack of oxygen in their blood. One way of monitoring how much oxygen your blood carries is by using a pulse oximeter.

Our body as a whole is made up of different organs and systems that enable us to function properly, and each part requires oxygen for it to be able to continue doing its role efficiently. Absence or lack of oxygen will cause cells to malfunction and gradually deteriorate. In due course, it will pave way for a variety of system or organ failure to arise. People who suffer from conditions that can influence their blood oxygen levels can monitor their oxygen saturation via arterial blood gas analysis or by a pulse oximeter.

What Is Pulse Oximetry?

In this article, I decided to talk all about pulse oximeters. Pulse Oximetry is a method of testing or monitoring the measure of oxygen saturation (SO2) or oxygen levels of the blood (amount of oxygen present in a haemoglobin protein) of a patient too see how well oxygen is distributed to certain areas in the body that are located furthest away from the heart or in the extremities.

The standard oxygen saturation in pulse oximeter indications ranges from 95 to 100 per cent. Readings that is lower than 90 per cent is regarded as low oxygen blood level and can be a potential clinical plight. 

Although in terms of accuracy, an ABG test or arterial blood gas analysis is much more precise than a pulse oximeter. ABG test is carried out by obtaining a blood sample. As the name suggests, the blood should be drawn from an artery, which in normal cases, is common in the wrist. This method can produce an exact result, but it is more on the painful side since blood needs to be extracted. Unlike pulse oximetry that is non-invasive, easy, and painless.

This method can produce an exact result, but it is more on the painful side since blood needs to be extracted. Unlike pulse oximetry that is non-invasive, easy, and painless. An arterial blood gas analysis is also inconvenient and difficult to execute in one’s personal home. Let alone without a professional, that’s why an alternative such as a pulse oximeter is always handy.

A pulse oximeter is a small clip-like medical device that is affixed to a structure in the body, usually on the finger, but it can also be attached to a different part such as a toe or an earlobe.

What is a pulse oximeter? - klaudiascorner.net
What is a pulse oximeter? – klaudiascorner.net

Pulse oximeter functions by generating minimal beams of light through a comparatively thin section of the skin measuring the percentage of oxygen existing in the blood. The oxygen saturation is calculated by how much light was absorbed by the blood.

Take good care of yourself,

Klaudia  xx


What Is A Pulse Oximeter?
Pulse oximetry and ABG tests – What exactly is a pulse oximeter? –  Pinterest image ©klaudiascorner.net




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