Low Blood Saturation levels

After two visits to our local A & E (one at the request of the 111 doctor) and a phone call to my Respiratory Nurse on Christmas Eve nobody seemed overly concerned at my low blood sats which were in the low to mid 80's. I have Pulmonary Fibrosis and am on 2 litres/min at rest and 8 litres/min when moving. I was hoping to get an Arterial Blood Gas test to see if it was OK to raise from 2 litres/min but to no avail. With my blood sats still low I am at a loss as to what to do next.....ideas please.

13 Replies

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  • Morning.

    I would contact them again do you feel like you have an infection, my consultant said I should keep on at them until I get the answer I want because you know your own body. Your blood gas does seem low but I'm not an expert.

    Ring again, good luck.

    Kim xxx

  • Many thanks for responding kimmy59 . I don't feel like I have an infection. I am on anti-biotics (Amoxicillin 500mg) anyway because I thought I was staring with an ear infection. My GP wasn't sure I was but being so close to Christmas started me on a course. The problem now is that the hospital will be on minimum staffing and my REsp Nurse will be on holiday.

  • Thanks for the advice Stich. The 111 (out of hours) doctor has already sent me to A & E by ambulance but they say they are not in a position to do an Arterial Blood Gas Test which is needed before my Oxygen can be increased.

  • What a strange thing to say. I suppose they mean that the lab is closed - hope there are no inpatients needing an abg test. What did they do with you - you said you went in by ambulance, how did you get home? Are your sats low even when you are on your oxygen 2Lpm?

  • I don't know what the reason was. Maybe I should have insisted on being admitted.They are still in the very low 80's. I have been giving them a short boost now and again by increasing the O2 but goodness only knows where they drop to at night.

  • My Husband is using his through the night on 2litres. He has had an infection and finds he is better for it. I tried to speak to the Respiratory nurse but she won't be back till Monday. We could have spoken to someone else but we didn't. I have left a message. You can't afford to let you oxygen drop too low.

  • Hi Dave . My Husband has Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis. He has had it for four years. He is on five ltrs for doing anything and two when he is resting. Without it his levels have dropped to 79 which is not good. I make him put his oxygen on when it drops. We have a job to keep it at 90. It sounds like you are a bit like us and don't know a lot about it. Our Respiratory nurse isn't too worried. I asked for a re-assessment and she did put his oxygen up from four to five when ambulatory. I find it all confusing and worrying don't you?

  • I am on oxygen. 5Lpm at rest and 8Lpm when doing things and moving around. I was told by my consultant that I must be on oxygen for 16hrs a day to keep my organs safe so I assume it isn't too bad for my levels to be low for the other 8hrs (86 at rest). My levels drop as soon as I come off oxygen as the body doesn't store oxygen.

    I am on oxygen overnight although I don't know if my sats drop when I am sleeping. As they are low all the time during the day, I assume they are low at night.

    So I do 10hrs overnight and then choose when I do the other 6hrs - I may be out and about or I may be at home and feeling lethargic - just check my sats and pop it on. I don't change the numbers though. Been told not to make changes without checking.

    I think you need a review of your sats.

  • Hi Happyfeet. We had a review a week or so ago and my Husband was told to turn his ambulatory oxygen up to five but keep it at two for resting. We haven't been told how long he should be on it so he uses it when necessary. I wish there were some guidelines as I feel we are stumbling in the dark. If you use too much you can become oxygenised if you don't use it enough you can damage your heart etc: there doesn't seem to be a right or wrong way. Very confusing. Do you know if there is any literature on it? Mavis. X

  • Hi Mavary i am on oxy 15 hours at 4 litres pm and on ambulatory the same and am as confused as you seem to be. What is oxygenised. Bengunn.

  • Hi Begun. Apparently some people retain 02. I'm not sure what it means or how it affects you but it's bad. I wish they would print something to give us guidelines

  • I wonder if the blf have any info on it. xx

  • you were up late too Stitch! Is your middle name Nocturnal? I had a normal cup of tea at 5pm which kept me awake to 4.30 this morning. Very tired now

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