Once limited to hospitals and critical care environments, oximeters are now a common medical tool used by individuals and hospitals alike. With purposes ranging from blood oxygen concentration monitoring in critical care individuals to allowing athletes to perform at their physical peaks when combined with one of the many affordable oximeters available, oximeters are now one of the most common pieces of medical technology in the world.
Like any piece of equipment, an oximeter requires some periodic maintenance to be able to complete its functions. From tabletop critical care monitoring systems to the smallest, simplest fingertip pulse oximeters, the requirements of oximeter maintenance are fairly consistent across models. Listed below are the things you’ll need to check out every few months to ensure your oximeter is delivering accurate readings.
- Battery and Power Source – Small fingertip oximeters typically run on AAA batteries, and more advanced models utilize a rechargeable battery pack. If the batteries are drained, or otherwise not transmitting their power properly to the device, readings can become inaccurate and the display will not work correctly. Also, batteries can decay if left inside devices for months or years without replacement. This can cause severe damage to the oximeters and might end up spoiling the device completely. Check your batteries every 2-3 months depending on use; and for hardwired devices, make sure to examine the power supply every 3-6 months to ensure everything’s working properly.
- Cleaning – Over time, oximeters will become dirty from the oils on your fingers, dead skin, and from handling. Buildup of these materials can cause inaccurate readings and damage to the device. Since oximeters make contact with skin, in some instances, they can transfer bacteria and illnesses. In order to keep your oximeter working properly and ensure your safety, all that’s needed is the occasional treatment with alcohol wipes.
- Testing – After replacing batteries and cleaning the oximeter, you may want to test your oximeter to ensure readings are proper. There are a few different ways to test the effectiveness of your oximeter – here’s a helpful example video. Be sure to inspect for damage to the device, dead pixels on the LED display, and other issues.
By following these steps, you’ll ensure that your oximeter continues to provide you with accurate readings so that you can ensure your health and safety. Be sure to visit us at Concord Health Supply for oximeter batteries, alcohol wipes, and a wide range of oximeters and related accessories.