Best Pulse Oximeter

Thanks to the increasing awareness about our health, almost every home has now commonly used medical gadgets such as sphygmomanometer, thermometer, glucometer, etc. A pulse oximeter is a recent addition to that list that has made its way into our lives.

A pulse oximeter is an easy-to-operate non-invasive device that is used for measuring the amount of saturated oxygen in the blood. Moreover, it also displays the pulse rate of the user. It can be used by anyone at home irrespective of age or gender. 

It is a compact device that can be easily carried into your pocket or stored in a small space within your medical kit. It comes in very handy in taking required medical measures beforehand when the patient’s blood oxygen level drops at dangerously low levels.

We all have heard of  that we keep at our house so we can have all the stats from time to time.

In this article, you will find how a Pulse Oximeter works, its types of oximeter followed by Buyer’s guide and benefits to help you make the right decision along with answers to frequently asked questions and our list of Best Pulse Oximeters in India.

How a Pulse Oximeter Works

Just like Blood pressure monitors and sleep trackers , an oximeter is also a must-have device if you wish to accurately monitor your health.

To use an oximeter, the probe of the pulse oximeter is clamped on a thin part of the patient’s body, such as a fingertip or an earlobe. The probe then sends two wavelengths of light through the body part to a photodetector, i.e., a receiver.

Oxygenated hemoglobin absorbs one of the two wavelengths of light, while deoxygenated hemoglobin absorbs the other wavelength. The photodetector or receiver analyzes the two wavelengths after they have passed through the body part and determines the blood oxygen level.

Benefits of Using a Pulse Oximeter

  • Monitors the saturation of oxygen in the blood for those suffering from sleep apnea and severe snoring.
  • They help in warning the hospital staff in case the oxygen level in the blood of an infant or any vulnerable patient becomes dangerously low.
  • Helps in monitoring pulse rate and Spo2 during exercise or any other physical activity, especially for someone suffering from cardiovascular and chronic respiratory conditions.
  • It measures the saturation level of oxygen in the blood for those under anesthesia.
  • Notifies you when the readings are beyond the limits.

Types of Pulse Oximeters

There are five types of pulse oximeters that are available in the market. They are:-  

Finger Pulse Oximeters

Finger Pulse Oximeter

Finger pulse oximeters are also known as Portable pulse oximeters. As the name suggests, such oximeters are small and portable and are generally used on the fingertips.

The oximeter is simply clipped on the finger, and the display screen is on the probe itself. When the oximeter is clipped on the finger, the results are shown on the screen, almost instantaneously.

Such oximeters are battery operated and are very useful to check blood oxygen levels at home. The easy use of such oximeters, portability, and affordability, makes it ideal for use at home, clinics, caregivers, or by patients themselves.

Handheld Pulse OximetersHandheld Pulse Oximeter

Handheld pulse oximeters are more sophisticated than finger pulse oximeters and are capable of producing more accurate results.

A handheld pulse oximeter has two parts, the probe and the display screen, which is a handheld screen. The two parts are connected via a cable. The probe is attached to the person’s finger; ideally, the index finger and the blood oxygen levels are shown on the screen.

Such pulse oximeters are capable of continuous oxygen saturation monitoring. They are mostly used in hospitals, ambulances, medical institutes, and emergency medical services (EMS).

Tabletop OximetersTabletop Pulse Oximeter

Tabletop oximeters are bigger than handheld pulse oximeters and are very similar to handheld oximeters. Like handheld oximeters, tabletop oximeters also have two parts, the probe, and the display screen, connected by a cable.

They are generally used in hospitals, medical facilities, and home care centers/settings. Some tabletop oximeters come with audio and visual alarms to warn people around when parameters like blood oxygen level and pulse rate fall below the safe range.

Most tabletop oximeters also come with plethysmograph display and are suitable for monitoring adults, kids, and neonate patients. They even come with a provision to store data or logs for several patients, even up to 100 in some cases.

Wrist Worn OximetersWrist Worn Pulse Oximeter

Wrist worn oximeters are just like the wrist watches that one wears. This type of pulse oximeter is used for continuous monitoring.

In many cases, the doctor may want to monitor your blood oxygen levels constantly, or during your sleep, wrist-worn oximeters are ideal for such cases.

The probe is attached to the patient’s finger, and the readings are displayed on a screen that is worn on the wrist, just like a wrist watch. The probe and the screen are connected by a short cable, which will not be a hindrance as you go about your daily work.

Such oximeters are capable of storing data as well. Some oximeters even have wireless connectivity via Bluetooth for wireless data transfer, while others have USB connectivity for the transfer of data.

Pediatric Pulse OximetersPaediatric Pulse Oximeter

Pediatric pulse oximeters are oximeters specially designed for kids, especially infants below the age of 4. They are finger pulse oximeters but built and designed to cater to kids and their smaller fingers without any problems.

Regular finger pulse oximeters are bigger and cannot cater to the smaller fingers of kids. Hence, pediatric pulse oximeters are used to monitor the blood oxygen levels for children and infants.

Some pulse oximeters come with an alarm when the pulse rate or oxygen saturation level goes below the safe range. Some of these pulse oximeters even have an anti-motion feature, which will help you get an accurate result, despite the child moving his/her hand.

Pulse Oximeter Buyer’s Guide

In purchasing a pulse oximeter, there are certain things to consider. Putting these into consideration will get you the best pulse oximeter.

Cost

The best option is to choose an oximeter you can afford. A costly oximeter can attract a high maintenance fee, and also give you more durability. Low cost oximeters have a small maintenance fee, but are less durable.

Warning System

It’s good to choose an oximeter with an excellent warning system. A suitable oximeter will produce an alarm warning you about your steady heartbeat and also your irregular heartbeat.

For those who rely on pulse oximeters for disease management, an indicator for a low battery to be able to maintain their health adequately.

Lightweight

Some oximeters can be very portable and also bulky. Therefore, choosing an oximeter that is lightweight is a good buy. These lightweight oximeters can be kept in your pocket without feeling uncomfortable.

Any individual suffering from hypoxia will need a lightweight oximeter, and it is almost impossible for a light weighted oximeter to get damaged or destroyed by careless management.

Durability

Durability is an essential factor in choosing the best pulse oximeter to buy. A strong pulse oximeter will provide the best result at all times. So, selecting a pulse oximeter that is not durable will put your life at risk in several scenarios.

A quality pulse oximeter should be able to withstand hard impact with the ground and possess a waterproof structure to prevent damage from water and humidity. The durability of an oximeter will avert the failure of the device and prevent inaccurate readings.

Visible display

There are several pulse oximeters with different styles or display and font color. Therefore, it’s crucial to choose a pulse oximeter with the perfect display of your choice and right font size.

It’s also essential to select a pulse oximeter with a beautiful backlit display. Under severe lightning conditions, some of the best pulse oximeters have adjustable brightness that is needed during these conditions. Y

ou can also look for pulse oximeters with multiple angle displays to improve your visibility during usage.

Accuracy and Reliability

The very first thing that one should look for while purchasing a pulse oximeter is its accuracy and reliability. The primary purpose of a pulse oximeter is to measure your blood oxygen level and pulse rate.

The key is to find a pulse oximeter that can produce accurate results consistently and reliably. Most pulse oximeters use the same mechanism to produce readings, and the only difference lies in the way they are manufactured.

Unfortunately, the only way to check whether a pulse oximeter is accurate or not is by cross-checking the results it produces with another one, such as one at your doctor’s office or other medical clinics.

Most oximeters should be capable of producing results within a few seconds with an accuracy of ±3%.

The accuracy of the oximeter is affected by motion. So, if your hand trembles, find an oximeter that has an anti-motion feature, which will still be able to produce accurate results.

Ease of Use:

A pulse oximeter should be easy to use and should not need much technical or special knowledge.

Finger oximeters are very easy to use, and they involve just clipping the oximeter on your finger and pressing a button, and voila, there is your result on the screen. Also, a large screen will make life easier, enabling easy reading of the results.

Some oximeters even display the results differently, making them easier to read and understand. All these are added benefits that will make it a lot easier to use a pulse oximeter. And that’s the way a pulse oximeter should be- easy to use.

Size of Probe

Check the size of the probe while purchasing a pulse oximeter and ensure that the probe fits on your finger snugly and comfortably. This is generally not an issue with the clip-on type of probes, where the probe can simply be clipped on to the finger without any fuss.

If you are looking to check the saturation oxygen for kids and infants, or even people with smaller hands or fingers, you could consider buying a paediatric pulse oximeter, which would be more suitable for that application.

Other Features

Some other features that could be a bonus are features such as memory for storage of data and multi-person memory wherein data for more than one person can be stored.

Other features could include Bluetooth connectivity or USB connectivity to transfer data to a system, where it can analyze further.

Short cables that would not create much of a nuisance would help. An oximeter, which is not very bulky and portable, would come in handy and can be easily stored as well.

Some pulse oximeters are even capable of generating other statistics such as a plethysmograph and perfusion index, which could also help in getting a better diagnosis.

1. Neclife Dr. Trust Finger Pulse Oximeter DR-50D 

Neclife Dr. Trust Finger Pulse Oximeter DR-50D
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Neclife’s DR-50D pulse oximeter is a portable and an easy to use device to check pulse rate and saturation oxygen even in professional environments.

It has a dual-core processor with OLED display that displays a bar graph and pulse waveform display. It is widely used in clinics, hospitals, and first aid kits.

Main Features
  • Dual-core OLED display displays saturation oxygen and pulse rate.
  • Comes with a one year warranty.
PROS (What we liked)
  • Compact, reliable, and durable.
  • It has an automatic power-off feature.
  • Easy to use and portable.
CONS (What we didn’t like)
  • No alarms included.
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2. Newnik Fingertip Pulse Oximeter PX701

Newnik Fingertip Pulse Oximeter PX701
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Newnik’s fingertip pulse oximeter is one of the best oximeters available in the market. It is designed to give quick, accurate, and reliable readings of blood oxygen level and pulse rate.

It is an FDA (Food and Drug Administration) and CE (European Conformity) certified oximeter and comes with a one year warranty.

Main Features
  • Gives quick and accurate readings of blood oxygen saturation and pulse rate, along with profusion index and plethysmograph.
  • FDA and CE certified.
  • Comes with a one year warranty.
PROS (What we liked)
  • Comes with audio as well as visual alarm.
  • Has a high accuracy of ±2%.
  • Has an anti-motion feature, enabling it to produce accurate readings even during motion.
  • Water resistant.
  • Suitable for both adults and kids.
  • Auto on and off feature automatically switches it on and off when a finger is inserted or removed.
CONS (What we didn’t like)
  • No negative points observed so far.
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3. MEDITIVE Finger Tip Pulse Oximeter 

The Meditive Finger tip Pulse oximeter is capable of measuring pulse rate and blood oxygen saturation levels accurately within just six seconds.

The rotatable OLED screen displays the readings in six different ways while the alarm function warns you when the readings are beyond the set limits. Moreover, the long battery life and compact size enable you to carry it to different locations.

Main Features
  • It comes with a rotatable OLED screen.
  • It displays the readings in six different ways.
  • The display brightness can be adjusted.
  • Comes with a sound and alarm function to notify you when your pulse rate and spo2 are beyond set limits.
  • Displays real-time readings within six seconds.
  • It automatically shuts off on removing a finger.
PROS (What we liked)
  • Light and compact design.
  • Has a long battery life.
  • Suitable for a wide range of finger sizes.
  • Ensures fast and accurate readings.
CONS (What we didn’t like)
  • The working of the product needs improvement.

4. BPL Medical Technologies Bpl Fingertip Pulse Oximeter 

BPL Pulse Oxy 02 fingertip pulse oximeter provides a fast and precise way for checking blood oxygen saturation levels and pulse rates. It comes with a self-adjusting finger clamp along with a simple one-button design that provides for convenient operation.

It has a small and portable design that makes it easy to handle and carry. This finger pulse oximeter is equipped with the latest technology and it features four directional color OLED displays for ensuring a clear view.

Main Features
  • This Pulse Oxy 02 fingertip pulse oximeter features an auto-rotating multi-directional display that includes a four directional colour OLED display that provides an enhanced view of pulse rate, Spo2, and perfusion index with plethysmograph.
  • This pulse oximeter comes with a clinical alert function that produces a visual and audible alarm in cases when the measurements are higher or lower than the normal conditions.
  • It is an energy-efficient oximeter that provides a longer battery life with a single charge and hence it avoids the need of charging it frequently.
  • It comes with the low battery indication feature that indicates when the battery of your oximeter dries out so that you can charge it and thereby keep a check on your health.
  • It features a lightweight and compact design that makes it easy to carry. It is suitable for a wide array of finger sizes.
  • It gives highly accurate measurements of blood oxygen levels and pulse rate. You can measure the oxygen concentration in the blood with a minimum deviation of +/-2%. It also measures the pulse rate with a minimum deviation of +/-2 bpm.
  • The package comprises a 1 fingertip pulse oximeter, two AAA 1.5V alkaline batteries, and a user manual.
  • It comes with a 1-year manufacturer’s warranty from the date of purchase.
PROS (What we liked)
  • It gives timely warning by way of visual and audible alarm alerts whenever there are high/low measurement readings.
  • This oximeter provides up to 20 continuous hours of battery with its two AAA batteries.
  • It is an energy-efficient oximeter that automatically powers off when not in use.
  • It can be used by anyone at home irrespective of age or gender limitations.
CONS (What we didn’t like)
  • The price is on the higher side.

5. Dr Trust Finger Tip Pulse Oximeter – 211 

Dr Trust pulse oximeter 211 is designed for providing the fastest and convenient way of monitoring SPO2 and pulse rate. It employs highly advanced sensor technology for detecting the rapid changes that are occurring in the oxygen levels.

It is a new and upgraded finger pulse oximeter that is suitable for patients who need quick and accurate oxygen saturation readings; including patients with breathing issues, mountain climbers, health trainers, and sports enthusiasts.

It comes with a wide finger chamber that is suitable for maximum finger sizes. It provides a quick, safe, and affordable way for monitoring blood oxygen saturation levels and pulse rates. It features a small and portable size that makes it convenient to handle.

Main Features
  • This pulse oximeter uses the most advanced sensor technology for accurate and fast detection of your blood oxygen saturation (SPO2) and heart rates.
  • Within 5-8 seconds, this pulse oximeter checks the pulses via its fingertip signals and then displays scientifically accurate results that can be used for medical purposes.
  • It features a large LED display that works great for everyone in dim-light as well as dark conditions. It provides brighter and shaper measurements every time on its large LED display.
  • It has a user-friendly design.
  • This pulse oximeter gets automatically shut-off and turns into sleep mode when not in use for more than 8 seconds.
  • It is a safe and comfortable pulse oximeter that meets the standard requirements set by health practitioners and hospitals.
  • It features a hypoallergenic and latex-free finger chamber that is prepared from medical-grade silicone for accommodating a wide range of finger sizes from kids to adults.
  • It is a compact, portable, light-weight, and convenient pulse oximeter that is non-invasive in nature.
  • This pulse oximeter is useful for all sorts of patients who require spot-checking or monitoring oxygen saturation including pediatric, adult, or neonatal patients.
PROS (What we liked)
  • It has a small & portable size along with a lanyard that makes it convenient to handle.
  • It shows fast results of blood oxygen saturation levels and PR on the LED display.
  • It has a user-friendly design that is dedicated to the care of older patients.
  • This pulse oximeter also protects all individuals who are sensitive to allergic sensitivities.
CONS (What we didn’t like)
  • This device does not show PI (perfusion index) waveform.

6. Hesley Finger Pulse Oximeter 

Hesley finger pulse oximeter is a German designed fingertip oximeter that protects the health of your loved ones. It provides dual-color LED display in 4 directions that allows you to read clearly the measurements of PR and blood SPO2 levels.

It provides high-reading accuracy and shows stability against the motion during measurement. It also shows stability against button pressing during measurement. It offers reading at an extremely low signal situation. It allows you to read the no-pulse beat situation.

Main Features
  • It is a clinically tested pulse oximeter that is designed to provide accurate and reliable readings with a very small margin of error.
  • It provides quick and fast measurements so that it is ideal for the SPO2 as well as pulse rate readings.
  • It features a bright and compact OLED display that allows clear reading in bright sunlight and dark conditions inside the home.
  • It comes with a superior oxygen saturation monitor that shows real time SpO2 level, pulse rate, and pulse rate bar.
  • It is a light-weight oximeter that is easy to carry and it can easily accommodate a wide range of finger sizes.
  • It is an easy-to-use pulse oximeter that comes with an auditory alarm for warning you in cases where your SpO2 and pulse rate are beyond normal readings.
  • This pulse oximeter is designed to be energy-efficient as it automatically turns off after 6-8 seconds.
  • It comes with a lanyard that provides convenient handling and makes it easy to carry anywhere.
  • It provides a plethysmograph and perfusion index that ensures you are taking correct and accurate measurements of your SpO2 and pulse rates.
  • It comes equipped with reliable and high-quality electronic components including an ABS shell, medical-grade silicone finger mold, OLED screen, anti-skip silicone, acrylic panel, and high-speed computing chips.
  • The package comprises a pulse oximeter, 2AAA batteries, a lanyard, a carrying pouch, and a user manual.
PROS (What we liked)
  • It is made from high-quality electronic components and it has undergone various clinical tests for providing reliable, accurate, and quick measurements of SpO2 and pulse rates.
  • It features a water-resistant design for easily withstanding the accidental splashes of water. It comes with a sturdy built design and good display OLED for easy viewing of measurements.
  • It is equipped with a buzzer alarm that sounds and blinks when it crosses the higher PR limit of 120 bpm and a lower PR limit of 50 bpm. Similarly, the alarm goes off when the lower SPO2 limit goes below 90%.
  • It provides a reading for perfusion index that works as a relative assessment of pulse strength in individuals. The PI(%) not only indicates the pulse strength but also indicates the various effects of anesthesia.
  • It provides fast measurement and covers a large measuring range.
  • It has an auto-power off functionality along with a low-level battery indicator and adjustable display orientation.
  • It is a high-precision oximeter that features comfortable silicone film that can accommodate fingers of various sizes.
CONS (What we didn’t like)
  • No negative points were observed so far.

7. Niscomed FPO-50 Pulse Oximeter 

Niscomed FPO-50 Pulse Oximeter
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Niscomed FPO-50 is a finger pulse oximeter capable of producing quick and accurate readings of saturation oxygen and pulse rate with an accuracy of ±2%.

It has a dual-color OLED screen with 6 display modes that come with a wider viewing angle, making it easy and clear to view from any angle.

Main Features
  • Displays saturation oxygen, pulse rate, and plethysmograph.
  • A dual-color OLED screen with 6 display modes.
  • Comes with a one year warranty.
PROS (What we liked)
  • Has a high accuracy of ±2%.
  • Comes with an automatic power-off feature.
  • OLED screen has 6 display modes and comes with adjustable brightness.
CONS (What we didn’t like)
  • No audio-visual alarms.
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8. ChoiceMMed MD300C2 

ChoiceMMed MD300C2
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The MD300C2 is simple, easy to use pulse oximeter from ChoiceMMed designed to produce accurate readings of saturation oxygen and pulse rate.

It is very simple to use and fits most adults without any problems. It is small and compact, which makes it very portable and handy. It is widely used in clinics and hospitals, as well as homes.

Main Features
  • Displays saturation oxygen, pulse rate along with pulse bar, and waveform.
  • Dual color OLED display.
PROS (What we liked)
  • Small, compact, reliable, and durable.
  • Low power consumption.
  • Has auto power off feature.
CONS (What we didn’t like)
  • Not suitable for kids.
  • No alarms included.
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Frequently Asked Questions

1. Does every pulse oximeter come with auto power off feature?

Most pulse oximeters are designed to save power by automatically turning off after several seconds off inactivity. But not all pulse oximeters come with this feature.

2. Do all pulse oximeters come with a graph that tells you if your heart is beating abnormally?

Not all pulse oximeters produced come with a graph displaying if your heart is beating abnormally. But it will be advisable to buy an oximeter of your choice that includes a chart to display if your heart is beating abnormally.

3. Is there any battery aside from the regular battery in the description?

All pulse oximeters use AAA batteries; it might be challenging to acquire an oximeter that doesn’t use AAA batteries.

4. Are there pulse oximeters for infants?

Yes, there are. Though not all oximeters are recommended for infant use, some oximeters can be used on an infant.

5. Is every pulse reading stable?

Yes, all pulse readings are stable. This can be achieved if you aren’t connected or close to a defibrillator or an oxygen source that will cause an incorrect interpretation.

6. Is it compatible with every location?

The oximeter readings are not affected by location.

 7. Do pulse oximeters measure co2 retention?

No, a pulse oximeter measures oxygen in blood and pulse rate.

8. Does it keep permanent records?

No, it doesn’t keep permanent records. As long as the power is on, it will keep updating oxygen and pulse rate readings, but once the power is turned off, the readings are lost.

9. What is the normal range of pulse oximetry?

The normal range of arterial oxygen is 75 to 100 mm of Hg. Anything below 60 mm of Hg is low and requires an oxygen supplement. The Oximeter readings range between 95 to 100 percent, anything below 90 percent is low.

10. What is Spo2?

This is known as blood oxygen saturation. It is the measure of the amount of oxygen-carrying hemoglobin in the blood relative to the hemoglobin, not carrying oxygen. If the Spo2 level is less than 95 percent, it is a sign of the poor level of oxygen in the blood; a condition called hypoxia.

11. Are pulse oximeters accurate?

Yes, most pulse oximeters ensure accurate readings. However, the readings could be less accurate if the person has cold hands, is wearing nail polish, artificial nails, or has poor circulation.

Conclusion

A pulse oximeter is an affordable and useful medical gadget that helps you to monitor your blood glucose levels quickly within no time. The best part is that it is a non-invasive device that gives you readings of blood oxygen levels by inserting your finger in the device for few seconds. 

It is an ideal addition to your medical kit as it helps in taking timely action whenever the measurements of saturated blood oxygen level get high or low than normal readings. Grab yourself a high-quality oximeter and track the status of your health anytime and anywhere with PR and blood oxygen readings.    

If you are not sure which product to go for, we would suggest the oximeter from Dr Trust Professional Series is one of the most popular options due to the wide number of features it offers. Meditive Finger Tip Pulse Oximeter  is a good choice if you are on a budget.

Dr. Sachin Bille
 

Dr. Sachin is a medical content writer at reviews.in and has a keen interest to inform people about useful and effective medical gadgets. Apart from practicing medicine and writing, he loves to watch sci-fi movies & spend time with family.

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