What’s the Deal With Pulse Oximeters?

Here’s what to know about devices that can measure blood oxygen saturation

People showing up at the ER with suspected Covid-19 tend to have an especially concerning symptom, explained emergency room physician Dr. Richard Levitan in the New York Times this month: Pneumonia caused by Covid-19 comes with dangerously low oxygen levels that sometimes go unnoticed. This symptom is known as “silent hypoxia,” wrote Levitan, “‘silent’ because of its insidious, hard-to-detect nature.”

The silence is worrying because it means people might be suffering from Covid-19 pneumonia without even knowing it. …

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