Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Pulse Oximeter Technology Use By Pilots To Prevent Hypoxia by Jacob Walters

Hypoxia is a very serious health condition that requires careful monitoring and diagnosis. What actually occurs during hypoxia is that specific parts of the human body do not get enough oxygen and as a result serious complications can occur because of that. As oxygen is truly the most important aspect to life, the lack thereof can not only be unhealthy but downright dangerous. Individuals that face the threat of hypoxia on a continuous basis are actually pilots. Pilots serve our society in many ways from military, commercial aviation, to even private pilots who enjoy flying for sport or hobby. However, pilots at most times are operating at extreme high altitudes in locations where oxygen levels are very low. Due to the oxygen levels being so low these individuals are always at the risk of experiencing hypoxia. So how do these individuals actually monitor their oxygen levels in order to prevent such an illness? Well, only one medical and health device provides the answer to this and that is a pulse oximeter.

A Pulse oximeter is the most important and necessary tool for a pilot to utilize while operating at extreme high altitutdes in order to prevent hypoxia. The way the device works is that it measures the pulse rate and oxygen levels of individuals quickly and effectively. The pilot simply inserts their finger inside the device and within seconds they get a reading of their oxygen levels and based on that number they are able to determine if they are at the risk of experiencing hypoxia. Should they be at that risk the pilot will know immediately that they need to get supplemental oxygen and as such their response time is absolutely critical for continued healthy functioning. Many times pilots ignore the risks associated with flying at high altitudes with very little oxygen. Unfortunately the health conditions that can occur due to the lack of oxygen are not only detrimental to one’s health but they can also be deadly. The reason why the oximeter device is particularly helpful to pilots is the fact that it is very portable. The device is only a fraction of the size of a cell phone can be taken anywhere the pilot desires to go. No longer is it necessary to have a large bulky device that is immobile and can get in the way of the pilot, the new generations of oximeter devices provide complete portability and the ability to measure the oxygen levels of pilot at whatever altitudes they desire to fly to. The device is also extremely durable and can be used in almost any weather or atmospheric situation. Typically what a pilot would do is that they would hook up their finger into the device and thus this will provide them with a continuous reading of oxygen levels in particular their blood oxygen saturation levels which is also known as SpO2 as well as pulse rate. The pilot can rest assured that they are monitoring their oxygen levels at all times in order to prevent hypoxia.