How to monitor your child's oxygen saturation levelsHHow to monitor your child's oxygen saturation levelsHow to monitor your child's oxygen saturation levelsEnglishRespiratoryChild (0-12 years);Teen (13-18 years)Lungs;TracheaRespiratory systemNon-drug treatmentCaregivers Adult (19+) Hospital healthcare providersNA2017-06-29T04:00:00ZReshma Amin, MD, FRCPC, MSc;Faiza Syed, BHSc, RRT;Tuyen Tran, RRT000Flat ContentHealth A-Z

 

 

How to monitor your child's oxygen saturation levels2963.00000000000How to monitor your child's oxygen saturation levelsHow to monitor your child's oxygen saturation levelsHEnglishRespiratoryChild (0-12 years);Teen (13-18 years)Lungs;TracheaRespiratory systemNon-drug treatmentCaregivers Adult (19+) Hospital healthcare providersNA2017-06-29T04:00:00ZReshma Amin, MD, FRCPC, MSc;Faiza Syed, BHSc, RRT;Tuyen Tran, RRT000Flat ContentHealth A-Z<h2>For how long at a time does my child’s oxygen saturation need to be monitored?</h2> <figure><img src="https://assets.aboutkidshealth.ca/akhassets/trach_oximeter_wrapping_EN.jpg" alt="Wrapping an oximeter probe over a child’s toe" /> </figure> <p>Your child’s <a href="/Article?contentid=2962&language=English">oxygen saturation levels</a> should be monitored continuously at night. Some children might also need continuous monitoring during the day, while others might only need “spot checks”. Before your child leaves the hospital, your healthcare team will review when you should use the oximeter for your child.</p><h2>​​How do I connect the oxygen saturation probe to my child?</h2><ol><li>Connect the probe to the Masimo oximeter device. The probe might be a clip or a wrap. Use the clip for quick checks and the wrap for longer-term use, such as overnight monitoring, and for children who move during monitoring.</li><li>Attach the probe to your child’s finger, toe, heel of the foot or palm of hand. Make sure the red light is on.</li><li>Press the power button to turn on the machine.</li><li>Check that all the indicators on the front panel light up and that you hear a beep.</li> <figure><img src="https://assets.aboutkidshealth.ca/akhassets/trach_oximeter_wrap_EN.jpg" alt="A finger with an oximeter finger wrap at the fingertip, showing the red light" /><figcaption class="asset-image-caption">A finger wrap for an oxygen saturation monitor</figcaption> </figure> <li>Check the readings for oxygen saturation (SpO<sub>2</sub>) and heart rate.</li><li>Make sure the oximeter alarms that have been set for your child are turned on.</li><li>Monitor your child.</li><li>When monitoring is complete, remove the probe from your child.</li><li>Dispose of the adhesive only if it is disposable. Check the manufacturer's instructions. </li><li>Press and hold the power button for two seconds to turn the Masimo oximeter off.</li></ol><h2>How often do I need to change the location of the probe?</h2> <figure><img src="https://assets.aboutkidshealth.ca/akhassets/trach_oxymeter_clip_EN.jpg" alt="A finger with an oxygen saturation finger clip over the fingertip" /><figcaption class="asset-image-caption">A finger clip for an oxygen saturation monitor</figcaption> </figure> <p>The probe should be moved to a different finger or toe every four hours. This will help ensure that it is working properly. It also gives your child's finger or toe a break. The light directly on a baby’s foot can cause small burns to the skin if the probe is left on for too long.</p><h2>What do I do if my child has an oxygen saturation reading below their target range?</h2><p>If the oxygen saturation (SpO<sub>2</sub>) reading is low, observe your child.</p><h3>If your child looks healthy, has a normal skin tone and is not having trouble breathing</h3><ul><li>Make sure you can see the light source of the probe.</li><li>Monitor your child again while they stay still and see if the oxygen saturation (SpO<sub>2</sub>) reading goes back to normal.</li><li>Place the probe on a different part of the body (one where there is good perfusion) and monitor your child again.</li><li>Wipe your child’s skin (where the probe is attached) with a 70 per cent isopropyl alcohol pad and monitor your child again.</li><li>Monitor your child again using a finger or toe that does not have nail polish or artificial nails (if necessary, remove nail polish or artificial nails before monitoring).</li></ul><h3>If your child is having trouble breathing</h3><h4>Assess your child’s airway</h4><ul><li>Suction any blockages in your child’s airway or tracheostomy as needed.</li><li>Change the tracheostomy tube if it is still blocked after suctioning.</li></ul><h4>Assess your child’s breathing</h4><ul><li>If your child is making good breathing efforts on their own or with the ventilator, give them oxygen through the tracheostomy mask or the ventilator.</li><li>If your child is not making good breathing efforts on their own or with the ventilator, manually ventilate your child with oxygen and check for chest rise.</li></ul><h4>Assess your child’s circulation</h4><ul><li>Check your child’s heart rate and skin tone and use the oximeter to check their perfusion.</li><li>Call 911 or go to the nearest hospital emergency department if low oxygen saturation readings continue.</li></ul><h2>How should I clean and maintain the oximeter?</h2><ul><li>When the probe gets dirty, clean it gently with a damp cloth or an alcohol swab.</li><li>When the outer surface of the oximeter gets dirty, clean it with a soft cloth dampened with a solution of warm water a mild detergent. <strong>Do not allow liquids into the inside of the oximeter.</strong></li><li>Wipe the surface of the oximeter with one of the following solvents:</li><ul><li>Cidex Plus (3.4 per cent glutaraldehyde)</li><li>10 per cent bleach</li><li>70 per cent isopropyl alcohol.</li></ul><li>To clean the display panel, wipe it gently with a cotton swab moistened with one of the above cleaning solvents.</li><li>Do not use petroleum-based solutions, acetone solutions or other harsh solvents to clean the oximeter.</li></ul><h2>Helpful tips when using an oximeter</h2><ul><li>Always keep the battery fully charged.</li><li>When the probe gets dirty, clean it gently with a damp cloth or alcohol swab.</li><li>When connecting your probe, always insert the plug correctly. Check the plug carefully to avoid damage.</li><li>When disconnecting and connecting the probe, grip the plug, not the cable.</li><li>When not in use, place the probe in a safe place where it cannot be damaged.</li></ul><p></p> <a class="btn btn-primary" href="https://www.aboutkidshealth.ca/trachvent">Return to trach-vent learning hub</a><br>How to monitor your child's oxygen saturation levelsTruehttps://www.aboutkidshealth.ca/Article?contentid=2964&language=Englishhttps://www.aboutkidshealth.ca/Article?contentid=2962&language=English

Thank you to our sponsors

AboutKidsHealth is proud to partner with the following sponsors as they support our mission to improve the health and wellbeing of children in Canada and around the world by making accessible health care information available via the internet.