Knowing Oxygen Saturation Value and How to Increase It

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Knowing Oxygen Saturation Value and How to Increase It
Knowing Oxygen Saturation Value and How to Increase It

Knowing the normal oxygen saturation value is important, especially during the current COVID-19 pandemic. The reason is, many people with COVID-19 often experience a decrease in oxygen saturation without realizing it. Check out the full explanation here

Oxygen saturation is a value that indicates the level of oxygen in the blood. This value is very influential on various functions of organs and body tissues. Measurement of oxygen saturation values ​​can be done in 2 ways, namely by blood gas analysis (AGD) or using an oximeter.

Knowing the Value of Oxygen Saturation and How to Increase It - Alodokter

How to Measure Oxygen Saturation Value

Blood gas analysis is a method of measuring oxygen saturation by taking blood samples from arteries. The results of the blood gas analysis are very accurate, because the measurements are carried out in a hospital and carried out by professional medical personnel.

Meanwhile, the oximeter is a clip-shaped device for measuring oxygen saturation. The measurement is done by clamping the oximeter on the finger. Oxygen saturation will then be measured based on the amount of light reflected by infrared rays, which are sent to the capillaries.

Unlike blood gas analysis, measuring oxygen saturation with an oximeter can be done easily at home. Oximeters are even now recommended by the World He alth Organization (WHO) to be owned in every home to measure oxygen saturation values ​​on a regular basis.

Understanding the Interpretation of Oxygen Saturation Values

The results of oxygen saturation measurements carried out by blood gas analysis are indicated by the term PaO2 (partial pressure of oxygen). Meanwhile, the results of measuring oxygen saturation using an oximeter are indicated by the term SpO2.

Below is how to read the results of the oxygen saturation measurement:

Oxygen saturation normal

The following are normal oxygen saturation values ​​for people with he althy lungs or no medical conditions:

  • Blood gas analysis (PaO2): 80–100 mmHg
  • Oximeter (SpO2): 95–100%

Meanwhile, in people who do have lung diseases, such as COPD, normal oxygen saturation values ​​can be different, depending on the condition and disease they suffer from. For example, a person with severe COPD may be asked by a doctor to maintain their normal oxygen saturation at an SpO2 value of 88–92%.

low oxygen saturation

The following are the criteria for low or below normal oxygen saturation values:

  • Blood gas analysis (PaO2): below 80 mmHg
  • Oximeter (SpO2): below 94%

People who have low oxygen saturation or hypoxemia may experience various symptoms, such as chest pain, shortness of breath, cough, headache, fast heartbeat, confusion, and blue skin.

However, people with hypoxaemia may not experience any symptoms. This condition, called happy hypoxia, can occur in COVID-19 patients.

Hypoxemia, whether it causes symptoms or not, can interfere with the work of organs and body tissues. If left unchecked, this can cause damage to vital organs, such as the heart, brain, and kidneys, and risk causing dangerous complications.

High oxygen saturation

In he althy people, oxygen saturation levels can sometimes be high. However, in general, conditions of high oxygen saturation are more often found in people receiving oxygen therapy, either with an oxygen tube or mask or in patients receiving breathing assistance through a ventilator machine.

To detect oxygen saturation that is too high, this can only be done by using a blood gas analysis test, with a PaO2 result above 120mmHg.

Increase Oxygen Saturation by Lying On Your Stomach

Decreased oxygen saturation can be treated with oxygen therapy, either through an oxygen tube or an oxygen mask. In patients who are unable to breathe spontaneously or who have stopped breathing, the use of a breathing apparatus, such as a ventilator, may be necessary.

In addition, doctors can also perform certain techniques on patients to increase oxygen saturation.

Proning technique or pronation position is one way that can be done to help improve low oxygen saturation, both in patients undergoing self-isolation at home or in patients with severe COVID-19 symptoms who are hospitalized.

The proning technique is done by positioning the patient lying on his stomach. This is because the prone position allows the air sacs in the lungs to fully expand, so that oxygen can enter the body more optimally.

Here's how to increase oxygen saturation with the proning technique or lying on your stomach:

Position 1:

  • Place a pillow under the head.
  • Lie on your stomach with your head turned to one side.
  • Tuck your hands under your chest.

Position 2:

  • Place a pillow under the head and under the stomach.
  • Lie on your stomach with your head turned to one side.
  • Place both hands beside the pillow.

Position 3:

  • Place a pillow under the head.
  • Lie on your stomach with your head turned to one side.
  • Bend the legs in the same direction as the head turns, forming an angle of 90 degrees. For example, if the head turns to the right side, then the bent leg is also the right leg.
  • Place a pillow under the bent leg for more comfort.
  • Keep your hands as comfortable as possible.

Position 4:

  • Place a pillow under the head.
  • Lie sideways to one side.
  • Place an extra pillow in front of the body and the side of the body against the bed and between the knees for support.

You can do these 4 proning techniques to increase low oxygen saturation. Change positions every 1-2 hours, so that the proning technique can be done comfortably. In addition, don't forget to monitor your oxygen saturation regularly, okay?

If after performing the proning technique, your oxygen saturation remains low or even decreases or if you experience certain complaints, such as shortness of breath, weakness, chest pain, or decreased consciousness, contact your doctor immediately so that your condition can be monitored and treated. correctly.

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