Pulse Oximetry at Home

Patricia B. Koff, MEd, RRT, Affiliate Faculty Member, University of Colorado, Denver, Colorado


The use of pulse oximetry at home has expanded over the past twenty years and is expected to be one of the major growth areas in home monitoring during the next decade.1

Initial use at home in the early 1990s focused on continuous monitoring with home mechanical ventilation and sleep studies.2-6 Intermittent spot-check use at home has become more common in recent years with conditions such as Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD), Congestive Heart Failure (CHF) and others requiring longterm oxygen therapy. Self-monitoring enables patients to become more active participants in their health care. As the population ages and the incidence of pulmonary and cardiac diseases continue, home pulse oximetry can provide objective data for determining health status and the possible need for medical consultation or interventions.

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