Oximetry is a way to check a person’s arterial blood oxygen saturation (SpO2) and pulse rate. The two are vital signs for any patient. The device used in oximetry is called a pulse oximeter and is employed in clinics, emergency rooms, hospitals, operating rooms and even at home.
It’s noninvasive, so the patient won’t have to contend with needles. Moreover, a pulse oximeter is fast and can give an accurate reading in a span of seconds.
Pulse oximeters are used medically in patients who have asthma, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), chronic obstructive airway disease (COAD), emphysema and other respiratory problems. But it’s also used by pilots and mountain climbers as a way to watch out for hypoxia. Athletes also use pulse oximeters in their high altitude training.