Can an Pulse Oximeter Help Detect COVID-19 at Home?

 A pulse oximeter is a device that is usually placed on a fingertip. It uses light beams to estimate the oxygen saturation of the blood and the pulse rate. A pulse oximeter is a painless and reliable way for clinicians to measure a person's blood oxygen levels.

Oxygen saturation values are between 95% and 100% for most healthy individuals, but sometimes can be lower in people with lung problems.

Is a pulse oximeter helpful in catching COVID-19 early?

The new coronavirus that causes COVID-19 enters the body through the respiratory system. It causing direct injury to a person's lungs via inflammation and pneumonia. It can negatively impact of oxygen transferring into the bloodstream. This oxygen impairment can occur at multiple stages of COVID-19, for the patients who is not placed on ventilators.

Phenomenon with COVID-19 can have very low oxygen levels but otherwise appear well. It's why you may be wondering if an oximeter can help detect COVID-19 early.

However, not everyone who tests positive for COVID-19 will develop low oxygen levels. There are people never demonstrate low oxygen levels.

So pulse oximeter is not screening test for COVID-19. Having a normal oxygen level does not mean that you are free of infection. If you are concerned regarding exposure, formal testing is still required.

If a person has a mild case of COVID-19 and is self-treating at home, an oximeter can be a helpful tool for checking oxygen levels so that low oxygen levels can be caught early.


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