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ORIGINAL ARTICLE
Year : 2020  |  Volume : 7  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 51-56

Accuracy of pulse oximetry in comparison with arterial blood gas


Department of Anesthesia and Surgical Intensive Care, Faculty of Medicine, Zagazig University, Zagazig, Egypt

Correspondence Address:
MD Khadeja M Mohamed Elhossieny
Department of Anesthesia and Surgical Intensive Care, Faculty of Medicine, Zagazig University, Elglaa/Zagazig, 4511
Egypt
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None


DOI: 10.4103/roaic.roaic_91_18

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Background Oxygen plays a principal role in aerobic respiration. Oxygenation is tested by pulse oximetry, which is considered the “fifth vital sign” of health status. It is widely used in critical care medicine to measure arterial oxygen saturation (SaO2). Aim To evaluate the factors affecting the accuracy of pulse oximetry (SpO2) relative arterial oxygen saturation SaO2. Patients and methods The study included 70 patients admitted to emergency and surgical ICU. They were subjected to full history taking, complete physical examination and laboratory investigations, including complete blood count, liver and kidney function tests, taking sample of arterial blood gases, and at the same time, recording the readings of pulse oximetry. Results This study shows that SpO2 is accurate relative to SaO2 in arterial blood gases as the difference between SpO2 and SaO2 was less than ±3%. Many factors affected accuracy, such as mechanical ventilation, vasopressor, oxygen mask (P≥0.047), age (P≥0.045), and corresponding hypoxia (P=0.002), whereas the results were insignificant regarding sex and sepsis (P=0.568 and 0.660, respectively). Conclusion The pulse oximeter remains a valuable tool in intensive care patients, but an awareness of its limitations such as old age more 65 years, mechanical ventilation, vasopressors support, and oxygen mask is important, as they were the impact factors affecting its accuracy. It is an important component of enhancing the quality of intensive care.


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