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This information was reviewed and approved by Amy Olson and George Zeman (12/31/2014).

Oximetry is a procedure, which measures the oxygen level in your blood, without having to take a blood sample.

Pulse Oximetry Walking Test

Patient does a Pulse Oximetry walk to determine oxygen needs.

  1. A painless clip is placed on your fingertip, forehead, or ear while the technologist monitors the reading on a device attached by a wire.

  2. The reading may be monitored for several minutes while you are seated at rest to evaluate your oxygen level without supplemental oxygen. Then, if needed, supplemental oxygen may be provided by means of a nasal cannula. The amount delivered will be adjusted to bring you to the level your physician has ordered.


Pulse Oximetry with Walking

The technologist may have you walk with the sensor clip in place to observe your response to exertion. If your oxygen level decreases, you may be asked to repeat the test with supplemental oxygen increased to the next setting. This process may be repeated several times, until your oxygen level is adequate.


This information has been approved by George Zeman BS, RRT, CPFT and Amy L. Olson, MD, MSPH (January 2015).