The Best Pulse Oximeters to Buy Online, According to a Pulmonologist
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Before Covid, the last time you had contact with a pulse oximeter was during your annual health check or in the emergency room. But what exactly is a pulse oximeter and in what situation would a person need to use one at home?
A pulse oximeter is a small, chip-like clip-like device that uses light to quickly measure blood oxygen levels and pulse rate, also known as heart rate. Your pulse is the number of times your heart beats per minute, and it increases when you need more oxygen-rich blood to carry nutrients and energy to your muscles and cells. Oxygen saturation is a crucial measure of lung performance.
“A pulse oximeter measures the oxygen saturation of red blood cells and we use it to measure how well a person’s lungs are working and how well they can accept oxygen from the air they breathe,” says Dr Fady. Youssef, MD, board-certified pulmonologist, internist, and critical care specialist at MemorialCare Long Beach Medical Center in Long Beach, California.
Covid sufferers may have an increased heart rate in response to fever or inflammation, as your heart works harder to pump more blood to all the different parts of your body. In severe cases, the infection travels down the airways to the lungs, making it harder for your lungs to deliver oxygen to the bloodstream. The Center for Disease Control suggests people seek medical attention when they experience overt symptoms such as “trouble breathing” and “persistent pain or pressure in the chest.” Depending on the severity of your case or if you are at higher risk of side effects due to advanced age or obesity, your doctor may recommend that you measure your vital signs at home with a pulse oximeter.
A pulse oximeter is handy for non-Covid conditions. For patients with lung disease or who use home oxygen concentrators to maintain healthy oxygen levels, Dr. Youssef says having a pulse oximeter at home can be helpful. A doctor will provide instructions on when and how to pick up and read a pulse oximeter, but Dr. Youssef provided us with what he considers a normal oxygen saturation range.
Read more: Best heart rate monitors
“For most healthy individuals, a healthy reading is probably above 94%, but we don’t worry as long as it’s not consistently below 90%.”
According to Dr. Youssef, not all pulse oximeters available for purchase online are legit. Pulse oximeters are FDA-approved medical devices, so you’ll want to check the FDA database to make sure the manufacturer and model number have been tested and approved for accuracy.
Fortunately, we have already done the work for you and compiled a list of the best pulse oximeters available on the market that are also FDA approved. If you have Covid or another medical condition that affects your lungs and want to monitor your oxygen saturation levels at home, check out the pulse oximeters below.
The best pulse oximeters
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Fingertip Wireless Pulse Oximeter
Reliable and reliable, this pulse oximeter is used by many telemedicine programs in the United States. The accompanying app tracks your levels and stores the data, making it easy for medical professionals to monitor your health. The app also shows you the real-time plethysmograph (the SpO2 waveform) and perfusion index, letting you know instantly if you’re taking your pulse correctly.
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Pulse oximeter with relaxation coach
This Bluetooth-enabled pulse oximeter pairs with an app to measure your levels. The app uses this data to provide personalized breathing exercises to focus on your best relaxation breathing pattern, which they claim can improve your body’s natural response to stress.
Pulse 7 Pro
The Oxiline Pulse 7 Pro has over 23,000 reviews and a near-perfect five-star rating. Reviewers rave about its speed and accuracy, saying it gives them peace of mind. It is highly recommended by nurses and doctors caring for patients with Covid and other lung diseases.
CMS-50D1 Pulse Oximeter Blood Oxygen Sensor
For another easy-to-use option, this pulse oximeter comes in extremely handy. Overall, customers report accurate results and highly recommend it for an affordable price.
Finger-Clamp HD OLED Pulse Oximeter
We love this pulse oximeter for its gorgeous mint color and bright OLED display, which offers a crisp, clear reading. The device also displays the pulse rate bar graph and plethysmograph for maximum transparency of your lung capacity.
fingertip pulse oximeter
This pulse oximeter is expensive because of its trustworthy reputation. It’s the leading pulse oximetry at 9 of the top 10 U.S. hospitals according to the 2020-21 U.S. News and World Report Best Hospitals Honor Roll, and it’s trusted by healthcare providers around the world to monitor more than 200 million of patients each year. For hospital-grade accuracy, this is your best bet.
O2 SpO2 Bluetooth Fingertip Pulse Oximeter
The FORA O2 SpO2 monitors your levels while you sleep, which is useful for anyone who thinks they have sleep apnea. The device also has a companion app that performs functions such as heart rate variability analysis and guides you through breathing exercises to regulate your heart rate.
CMS-50D Pulse Oximeter
This affordable option measures your SPO2 and pulse on the go, which is handy for athletes trying to optimize their performance by increasing their lung capacity. Featuring a battery-saving auto-off feature and heart rate bar graph, this device provides fast and reliable readings.
MD300W314 Wrist Pulse Oximeter Recording
This pulse oximeter measures your blood saturation using a cushion that you wear on your finger connected to a wrist screen. This is great for anyone looking to track their levels overnight, as it’s more likely to stay put all night. It also has configurable audible alarms for both oxygen level and heart rate for instant reporting.
Onyx Vantage 9590 Fingertip Pulse Oximeter
Nonin invented the world’s first pulse oximeter in 1994 and they quickly became staples for healthcare professionals and patients alike. When consumers started adding pulse oximeters to their home medical kits during the pandemic, Nonin was a trusted name. Their Onyx Vantage 9590 Fingertip Pulse Oximeter is built to last and provides comfort for anyone with respiratory conditions.
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