5 Reasons to Recommend Pulse Oximeter to A Pregnant Woman
The use of pulse oximeter has long been recommended in pregnant women but there are few data on the normal range for oxygen saturation at rest and on exertion, and there is no standard exercise protocol to deliver an appropriate cardiovascular challenge in pregnant women.
So why must a pregnant woman have this pulse oximeter?
1. The blood oxygen saturation level of a pregnant woman may be lower than the reading of a regular person
It is still encouraged for a pregnant woman to remain the blood oxygen level in the normal range between 95% - 100%. However the reading will be lower than usual especially when there are 2 human beings sharing the same body, the amount of oxygen needed will definitely be higher than other people. When a pregnant woman shows symptoms such as getting tired or feeling sleepy, it should be taken care as these are the symptoms of having low blood oxygen level.
Cited : Perinatology.com
According to EurekAlert.com, the lack of oxygen in the period antipating child birth - a condition that may affect children of pregnant women subjected to a high blood pressure disorder called pre-eclampsia - has been pointed as was one of the causes of schizophrenia. Besides, referring to the chart above, the range of blood oxygen saturation level is getting lower when close to the end of the trimester. This is important to ensure the pregnant woman will get sufficient oxygen, that’s why they are often encouraged to lie down for better blood circulation.
2. Act as a precaution, especially after the baby delivery
After the baby is delivered, mothers are very tired and weak. Therefore, it’s important to monitor health performance during the first few days after the delivery. After delivery, cardiac output decreases rapidly at first, then more slowly. These kind of changes although is normal, but it’s best to monitor than do nothing. Besides, the newborns are also advised to monitor with a pulse oximeter to check the lung functions.
3. Be cautious when there is irregularities in heartbeatSometimes, irregularities in heart beat or pulse rate might occur during the pregnancy. During pregnancy, the amount of blood pumped by the heart (cardiac output) increases by 30 to 50%. As cardiac output increases, the heart rate at rest speeds up from a normal prepregnancy rate of about 70 beats per minute to as high as 90 beats per minute. This is because the heart is working harder to provide enough oxygen to 2 lives in 1 body. However, not to worry as such changes are normal during pregnancy.
Please take note of other abnormal heart sounds and rhythms (for example a rapid, irregular heart rate), which occur more often in pregnant women, may require treatment. Therefore, regular monitoring is needed during the pregnancy.
4. Getting a baseline measurement for a pregnant woman
With a pulse oximeter in hand, it will help them to know what’s normal and what’s unusual for you. For example, if you're a person who ordinarily runs a 99 and you're running a 91, you will then need to take it seriosusly - seek for medical assistance. If you ordinarily run a 93 and you're running at 91, that's still consider ok but you need to monitor. Find your baseline, and make sure you’re staying within a few points on either side of it.
5. Avoid the happening of shortness of breath
Most people rush to the ER with shortness of breath from COVID-19, but the pulse oximeter will alert you to your low oxygen levels BEFORE you experience shortness of breath. Don’t wait until you can’t breathe; by the time you're short of breath, your illness is a lot harder to treat. Check your oxygen levels throughout the day and stay on the safe side.