The perfect way to a precise reading

An oximeter is the most used medical aid since Covid 19 has invaded the world. But most of us make mistakes in handling it , as a result we refrain from getting the perfect measurement.

Since 2019 with the onset of Covid-19 in the world, we all have been habituated with some things like the oximeter, sanitisers and masks.
In order to make our readers a little more aware of the proper usage of the oximeter, Fit Northeast had a conversation with Dr. Rajib Bhuyan, a Guwahati-based pathologist.
Dr Bhuyan said that a pulse oximeter is an instrument that was used to measures the oxygen saturation in the hemoglobin of the blood.
"It is quite safe, painless and is non-invasive. The sensors fitted in it helps in the proper measurement of the correct oxygen level in the body. Pulse oximetry is a frequently used tool in anaesthesia practice. It gives valuable information about arterial oxygen content, tissue perfusion and heartbeat rate," he said. 
Dr Bhuyan said that when a common man uses the oximeter, he or she often puts it into the wrong finger which gives an incorrect result. He had to say that a large number of studies said that the middle finger of the dominant hand has the highest and possibly the most accurate SpO2 measurements.
The highest SpO2 value can be taken as the most accurate value that reflects the arterial oxygen saturation (SaO2). Higher perfusion in the middle finger seems reasonable to expect the highest and most accurate SpO2 value.SpO2 measurement from the fingers of both hands with the pulse oximetry, the right middle finger and right thumb have statistically significantly higher value when compared with the left middle finger in right-hand dominant volunteers. We assume that the right middle finger and right thumb have the most accurate value that reflects the arterial oxygen saturation.
SpO2 measurement from the fingers of both hands with the pulse oximetry, the right middle finger and right thumb have statistically significantly higher value when compared with the left middle finger in right-hand dominant volunteers.
There is another thing that is very important to be taken into consideration while using an oximeter is that the nails should be clean or it should not have any nail paint on them. The nail polish distorts the measurement, showing inappropriate results.
representative image
Image: representative image
That is why during the clinical examination in an emergency situation, nail varnish is routinely removed to assess oxygen saturation. Significantly, black, blue, and green nail polish significantly lowered oximeter readings of oxygen saturation.
Blue and green produced greater decreases than purple and red. Some but not all nail polishes absorb light at the wavelengths used by the pulse oximeter (660 nm and 940 nm).
The degree of artifactual desaturation correlated best with the difference between absorbance at 660 nm and absorbance at 940 nm (r = 0.95). Spectrophotometric absorbance data suggest that other colours may interfere with a pulse oximeter.
These days many girls even wear artificial or acrylic nails which are also seen as giving a hindrance in the measurement.
Concluding the conversation the doctor advised everyone to stay protected by wearing a double mask when they step out of their homes and get themselves vaccinated as soon as possible in order to defeat the pandemic.



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