With cases of COVID-19 on the rise across the globe, it may be important to look at how pulse oximeters can be used to monitor COVID-19. Given the fact that pulse oximeters look at both heart rates as well as blood oxygen levels, it makes it easier to detect the condition and even monitor for progress.
What is COVID-19?
COVID-19 is a disease that is caused by one of the several Coronaviruses and which has reached global pandemic levels. Many of the people who get COVID-19 show few to no symptoms. Many such people, known as asymptomatic carriers, may not even be aware that they have COVID-19. However, for other people, especially those with serious chronic conditions such as diabetes and High Blood Pressure, COVID-19 can cause serious illness and can even be fatal without urgent medical care.
One of the symptoms of the condition is difficulty in breathing, which occurs when the virus attacks the lower respiratory region and particularly the lungs. When this happens, the lungs are unable to process as much oxygen as they normally would and for this reason, blood oxygen levels go down.
What Are Pulse Oximeter Devices?
Pulse oximeters on the other hand are devices that are used to measure pulse rates as well as monitor blood oxygen levels. Pulse oximeters do this by using infrared rays to scan blood vessels for oxygen levels. The fact that they are so easy to use (simply clip the device at the end of your finger) means that many people can own and use these useful devices from the convenience of their homes.
How Pulse Oximeters Can Help
When it comes to COVID-19, one of the common symptoms of this disease is a drop in blood oxygen levels. Having a pulse oximeter from a top pulse oximeter seller can be helpful in determining if you need to see a health specialist or not. Keep in mind though that a drop in blood oxygen level is not a sure-fire sign that you have COVID-19. In fact, the only way of establishing that you have COVID-19 is through a test. However, a sudden drop in blood oxygen levels accompanied by other symptoms such as coughing, shortness of breath and fever might be an indicator that you may need to reach out for medical help.
In some cases, doctors have detected what they call silent hypoxia. In such cases, people seek treatment for other conditions (fever, etc.) and doctors realize that these patients have very low blood oxygen levels with no related symptoms. While it is not fully understood how this phenomenon happens, it is clear that a pulse oximeter would easily catch this situation early.
Conversely, if you are recovering from COVID-19, a pulse oximeter can help you monitor the rate of your recovery. As the effects of the virus wear off, your blood oxygen levels naturally return to normal. This means that your pulse oximeter can help you know how fast your lungs are going back to their normal operational levels.