Pulse oximeters are still hot commodities these days, months after they became associated with detecting COVID-19 and started appearing in smartwatches and fitness bands like the Apple Watch Series 6 and the Amazfit Band 5. They’re sensors that use infrared light to measure how well oxygen is binding to your red blood cells and report something called the peripheral capillary oxygen saturation, or SpO2. If you’re looking for one of these gadgets, the good news is that they’ve dropped to a reasonable $20 or so from a summertime high of about $50. But right now, I’ve got a deal for you: Here’s a pulse oximeter fingertip sensor for just $13 when you use promo code CNETPLOX at checkout, down from its regular price of about $25.
This unit slides over a fingertip and generates a result in about 8 seconds, displaying your SpO2 on the 1.5-inch LED display.
Of course, not everyone needs one of these things. Some people with specific medical conditions may be advised by their physician to use a pulse oximeter regularly at home to monitor their SpO2 level. Otherwise, you should not use an SpO2 sensor for medical purposes — these devices are not approved for medical use, and can, at best, help you decide if you should follow up with your physician. I recommend checking out Dale Smith’s CNET article called “Can pulse oximeters detect coronavirus? How they work and more.” It’s written with the Apple Watch Series 6 in mind, but applies to devices like this one just as well.
This article was first published earlier in the week.
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The information contained in this article is for educational and informational purposes only and is not intended as health or medical advice. Always consult a physician or other qualified health provider regarding any questions you may have about a medical condition or health objectives.