Looking for clinical grade SpO2-meter (blood oxygen saturation) that sits on 2nd finger limb

edited July 2021 in General Discussion

Hi, I hope so much someone else in this forum tracks their SpO2 (blood oxygen saturation) too. The problem:

  • smartwatches are inaccurate because they cannot shine through the wrist. Thus they use reflectance oxymetry which is less accurate. This is why no smartwatch (Apple Watch, Samsung Watch, fitbit, ...) has FDA approval for its SpO2 measurement. And never will, unless a major invention will come, increasing accuracy
  • Fingertip-sensors such as the Masimo oxymeter provide world class measurement, but are unpractical in real life when using fingers (sports, typing...). I have killed my expensive Masimo Spo2 while doing sports.

So does anyone know an SpO2-sensor that sits on the second finger limb (the second phalanx), thus uniting the advantages of both?
Would you share experiences?
I am particularly interested in continuous Spo2-recording over hours

Thank you !!!


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    I hope so much somebody responds...

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    thank you so so much!!! (and sorry for my belated reply)

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    The new oura ring is supposed to be fantastic for that!

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    edited November 2021

    thank you, I always like to receive suggestions, a lot! unfortunately:
    "The ring will also be equipped with a pulse oximeter to track blood oxygen levels, though that feature won’t be turned on until sometime next year. "
    and then, we didn't even talk about the question if that spo2 sensor will be valid. just to make it clear, even clinical FDA approval is a low bar of validity, and even that no fitness gadget meets. basically they are producing bogus number for naive customers... and even if the measurements are normally valid, then the next question arises, if they are able to handle intense movement such as in sports which, at the moment, only Massimo is able to do (and they have a patented algorithm. and they only sell fingertip spo2 meters which is very unfortunate for sports and I already killed mine...).

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    Thank you for the feedback! I love the info. Good luck on your journey

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    edited November 2021

    I received the answer from the oura ring manufacturers : they do not even aim for any accurate spo2 measurement and are not willing to make any statement whatsoever as to measurement accuracy. I specifically asked if they at least applied for any clinical validation from any health agency like the FDA in the USA or their European equivalent. no they did not even apply and do not even intend to do so. while I do not care much about clinics, I do care about the fact that for a device being clinical grade it needs to do as little as having an accuracy of +/- 2 %. on the first glance, this may sound like very accurate. but it actually means very inaccurate: all spo2 measurements evolve essentially around 95%, a little bit up a little bit down. if you are a few percent down your oxygen saturation is already less optimal. and more than 98% nobody has. so if you have here +/- 2 % in deviation between the gold standard and what the device produces, then this inaccuracy essentially consumes important part of the measurement range. in colloquial terms you can safely translate this to: garbage. and then, we did not even start to talk about what happens if you dare to move a tiny bit while using the device. even for the easiest thing, spo2 while sleeping, you will move sometimes. and such a garbage device will translate your movements to important desaturation events during sleep such as happens in sleep apnea.
    -> Oura is just another of all these shiny but worthless "consumer health gadgets".

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    edited November 2021

    Hi Lolinda,

    I like the OMRON products.

    I use to be a BIOMED for various hospitals. I would calibrate medical devices for a living. No two instruments will ever agree on a reading but they get pretty darn close. Nobody wants to certify equipment sold over the counter as it can lead to lawsuits if they don't perform as advertised.

    However, what you can do is get to know your equipment. Take several readings and take the average. Get to know what is normal for you. Any abnormal readings are what I would be looking for. There will be some variation depending on several factors such physical condition, so I would expect +/- reading.

    I also have an over the counter automatic blood pressure monitor. I'm seeing these same models appearing at my local doctor's office as they are inexpensive and easy to replace.

    Based on my growing history, I know what is normal for me.

    If ever I suspect my readings are abnormal, I head straight to the health clinic to get a checkup.

    Hope that helps.

    Harry - Just a 68 year old male running for his life.

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    Hi @I_ROBOT thanks! I checked out Omron spo2 meters. they all seem to sit on the fingertip. do you know by any chance if there are products that sit on the second finger limb? I asked because for sports it is extremely impractical to have the device sitting on the fingertip. I already killed my Massimo fingertip spo2 meter that way... :-(

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    I tried twice to post a reply and so far not working.

    Harry - Just a 68 year old male running for his life.

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    Working now?

    I've not seen these for sports.

    However, here is a couple of interesting models:
    Wrist Oxygen Monitor


    Wrist Pulse Oximeter for sleep and fitness

    Interesting article:

    I use a heart rate monitor and log my VO2max once a week.

    Harry - Just a 68 year old male running for his life.

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