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Strange Oxygen Saturation Level Pattern

April 29, 2009 by Bill Strong
We've been noticing a strange pattern with Gwendolyn's oxygen saturation levels. We thought it was isolated to while she is sleeping, but today we put her pulsox machine on during the day and the pattern seems to be consistent. Normally, her oxygen saturation ranges from 98-100% regardless of whether she is awake or sleeping, on bi-pap or off bi-pap. Recently, her oxygen saturation levels have been consistently in the 94-98% range with sustained periods down in the low to mid 90%s. The strange thing is that when she drops into the low 90%s it seems that with a very slight change of positioning her oxygen saturation will recover almost instantly to her normal 98-100% range. Very strange. Her heart rate remains unchanged, her ability to sleep seems relatively unaffected, her lungs are clear, no temperature, no gas, no mucus plugs, and she always seems clinically fine during these periods, but the consistent nature of the change is definitely a bit alarming. We've also noticed that her time off bi-pap has been much shorter so our first thought is that she may need to have her bi-pap settings increased. We are reaching out to Gwendolyn's pulmonologist today so we'll see what she recommends...

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