top of page

Pulse Oximeter: How Pulse Oximetry Measures Can Help Detect COVID-19

Updated: Dec 29, 2020

In recent months, the COVID-19 outbreak has left us with a feeling of apprehension and uncertainty about the future. With still not a defined date for the release of a vaccine, we are left to coexist with the virus threat. Luckily, medical science has some non-invasive tools that can help us adopt effective countermeasures against the pandemic. The pulse oximeter  could be a valuable device to detect COVID-19 and save many lives.

In this article, we will discover more about this instrument and how pulse oximetry measures can effectively assist in the fight against Coronavirus. Let us have a look.

About COVID-19 

We have heard all the most convoluted stories regarding the origin of the pandemic. The mass media has told us about a virus created in a laboratory, and at the same time, that the epidemic was caused by wild animal transmission. Just time will tell us the truth behind the COVID-19 outbreak. What we will look at now is how to prevent it from harming us.

The COVID-19 is an infectious disease attributable to the newly identified coronavirus (SARS-CoV-2). The virus has spread and has been contracted by hundreds of thousands of people worldwide. The symptoms may vary depending on the seriousness of the situation. Here below, we have listed the most common conditions:

l fever

l dry cough

l tiredness

Other less common respiratory symptoms include sore throat and headache. Some patients have experienced gastrointestinal problems, such as diarrhea and nausea. These manifestations are accompanied by fatigue, aches, pains, loss of taste, or smell. On average, it takes roughly 5–6 days from when someone is infected with the virus for the first evidence to show up (it can take up to 14 days).

Most patients will develop mild to moderate illness, and they can recover in their home. However, severe cases can result in bronchitis, pneumonia, difficulty breathing, and strong chest pain. For these situations, it is mandatory for patient hospitalization.   

Acute symptoms occur most often in patients with chronic respiratory or cardiopulmonary diseases, weakened immune systems, and the elderly. Once the infection progresses, many organs such as kidney or heart may fail, leading to the person's death.

Following these premises, we will now know more about pulse oximetry.

About Pulse Oximetry

Pulse oximetry is a particular non-invasive method, which allows measuring the oxygen saturation in the patient's blood. More specifically, pulse oximetry measures let us to determine the hemoglobin's oxygen values present in the arterial blood (SpO2).

It is actually simpler than it sounds. We place the pulse oximeter on the finger, the light turns on, and within seconds the instrument displays oxygen and pulse readings.

How does it work

When you put the finger into the pulse oximeter, the device beams wavelengths light through our body. The waves target the hemoglobin, a protein molecule within our blood that carries oxygen. Depending on the quantity of oxygen absorbed by the hemoglobin, the instrument calculates the level of oxygen saturation in your blood.

At this point, you are probably wondering what the normal readings for oxygen saturation are. Healthy individuals averagely have indicators around 95 to 98 percent. Someone with existing health conditions may have a lower saturation rate. If values fall to 92 or below then, it is recommended to consult a doctor. 

On the other hand, a professional oximeter can also display your heart rate. A normal resting adult's heart rate ranges from 60 to 100 beats per minute. A well-trained athlete might have lower heart values up to 40 beats per minute. You should pay attention if your normal readings are consistently above 100 or below 60 beats per minute (if you are not a trained athlete).

Ultimately, pulse oximetry is instrumental in assessing the patient's general respiratory function and constantly monitor the degree of saturation and heart rate. The pulse oximeter is especially useful to monitor the parameters of individuals suffering from diseases such as chronic bronchitis, bronchial asthma, and pneumonia. Know more about pulse oximeter.

How pulse oximetry measures can help against COVID-19

The way that COVID-19 affects the human body is quite devious. The virus symptoms, for the most part, are shared by other common diseases. For this reason, it is not simple to identify the coronavirus at first gaze. The infection affects the lungs by gradually let the patient getting less and less oxygen over time. Afflicted people may do not realize to have breathing difficulty because their body slowly adjusts to lower oxygen. When this eventuality happens, the patient starts breathing faster and deeper, leading to the possibility of pneumonia. 

What is pneumonia, and why is it so dangerous? Pneumonia is the infection that causes the inflammation of the tiny sacs inside the lungs. Once the lungs are filled up with fluid or pus, it makes us having a hard time breathing. In serious cases, pneumonia can be life-threatening.

Here, we need to specify that the oximeter cannot be considered a test to prove that COVID-19 was contracted. However, compared with swab tests in the hospital, pulse oximetry is a less invasive method to identify the risk of COVID-19 pneumonia sooner. As a matter of fact, by preventatively detecting the silent decrease in the partial pressure of oxygen in the blood, we can seek professional medical assistance in time.

Pulse oximetry measures are extremely reliable at discovering oxygenation problems and elevated heart rates. Many cases are reported of people's life saved because of blood pulse oximeters.

Viatom Checkme O2 & Wearable Oximeter O2 Ring

Pulse oximeters can be purchased without a prescription in most pharmacies. Because of its simplicity and accuracy, many doctors recommend it as useful mean to monitor our health status when at risk of COVID-19.

At Viatom, we have launched Checkme O2(left), a wireless pulse oximeter which enables you to check for your SpO2 and pulse rate values anytime and anywhere. The data can be shared on the smartphone, and you can be constantly updated on your health situation. If since the beginning, you were wondering whether the whole process hurts? Do not worry. Pulse oximetry is painless, and the Checkme O2 wears comfortably, letting you move your fingers freely.

If you want even more freedom, Viatom has developed the Wearable Oximeter O2 Ring (Right). This smart gadget will keep track of any change in your oxygen and heart rate. The simple yet elegant design provides for a comfortable wearing experience. You will not even notice you are carrying it around.

The O2 ring has a practical function designed to vibrate once the SpO2 levels are low. This is indeed another valuable tool provided by Viatom to assist people in their daily health care.


When it comes to health care, Viatom stands in the front line, strongly believing that prevention is better than cure. For many years, our company has been researching and developing innovative medical devices. Even during COVID-19, Viatom pulse oximeters serve as a valuable preventive measure to detecting and curing the virus. 

Hopefully, this article provided you with relevant information about COVID-19 and pulse oximetry. To know more about our medical solutions, you are welcome to contact us

bottom of page