pulse oximeter is a medical device that indirectly monitors the oxygen saturation of a patient's blood (as opposed to measuring oxygen saturation directly through a blood sample) and changes in blood volume in the skin, producing a photoplethysmogram.
For people with COPD, asthma, Congestive Heart Failure (CHF) and other conditions, pulse oximetry is a technology used to measure the oxygen level in your blood and your heart rate. A finger pulse oximeter is equipped with technology to rapidly detect changes in your blood oxygen level. A finger pulse oximeter functions by shining light through your finger.The device may be attached to a finger, a wrist, a foot, or any other area where the device can read blood flow.
The sensors detect how much oxygen is in your blood based on the way the light passes through your finger. Pulse oximetry is the technology calculating the results to display a number on the oximeter’s screen that tells you the percent of oxygen in your blood. A finger pulse oximeter also measures your pulse rate.
Pulse oximetry can also provide feedback about the effectiveness of breathing interventions, such as oxygen therapy and ventilators.