Concurrent Validity of Arterial Blood Oxygen Saturation Measurements: A Preliminary Analysis of an iPad Pulse Oximeter and Traditional Pulse Oximeter Using Bluetooth

in International Journal of Athletic Therapy and Training
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Context:

Pulse oximetry has become mobile with the use of smartphone and Bluetooth wireless technology. This technology offers many benefits but has not been extensively studied. There is a need to further validate its clinimetric properties for health professionals to provide proper guidance to patients.

Objective:

This investigation assessed the concurrent validity of the iSpO2 pulse oximeter against a traditional pulse oximeter in measuring short-term resting blood oxygen saturation (SpO2) and pulse rate.

Design:

Observational study of reliability.

Setting:

University kinesiology laboratory.

Participants:

Thirty healthy, recre-ationally active adults (18 men, 12 women; mean age = 25.7 ± 5.46 years, mean height = 170.3cm ± 9.51, mean body mass = 76.4 kg ± 19.33).

Intervention:

Resting measurement of SpO2 and pulse rate using the iSpO2 pulse oximeter with the iPad Mini and a traditional pulse oximeter with Bluetooth.

Main Outcome Measure:

Resting SpO2 and pulse rate were concurrently measured over 5 min.

Results:

The concurrent validity between the iSpO2 and traditional pulse oximeter was moderate for measuring SpO2, intraclass correlation coeffcient (ICC)(3, 1) = .73, SEM = 0.70%, and good for pulse rate, ICC(3, 1) = .97, SEM = 1.74 beats per minute (bpm). The minimal detectable change at the 95% confidence interval for both instruments suggests that there may be 1.94% disagreement for SpO2 and 4.82 bpm disagreement between pulse oximetry methods. The 95% limits of agreement (LoA) for measuring SpO2 suggests that the iSpO2 and traditional pulse oximeters may vary -0.28 ± 1.98%, or approximately 2%. The 95% LoA for measuring pulse rate suggests that the iSpO2 and traditional pulse oximeter may vary 1.74 ± 4.98 bpm, potentially upward of 6 bpm. On the basis of the results of the LoA, it appears that there may be a slight systematic bias between the two devices, with the traditional pulse oximeter producing higher pulse rates than the iSpO2.

Conclusion:

The findings suggest that both instruments may be beneficial for indirect short-term measurements of resting SpO2 and pulse rate.

Scott Cheatham is with the Division of Kinesiology at California State University, Dominguez Hills, in Carson, CA, USA.

Morey J. Kolber is with the Department of Physical Therapy at Nova Southeastern University in Ft. Lauderdale, FL, USA.

Michael P. Ernst is with the Division of Kinesiology at California State University, Dominguez Hills, in Carson, CA, USA.