2 questions

1. is it true of EVERYONE that when you first put the oxymeter on it will be lower than it will be after a few seconds and is this because my finger may be cold? 2. If one has begun oxygen support [night times and when out and about in the city doing brisk walking] and there has been no cause established, should one expect to live longer or less? I started on oxygen at 69 when a sleep apnea test showed low oxygen all night. No apnea though.

18 Replies

Not true of mine (Nonin GO2). If I'm at rest it stays on the same reading from the start.

What your reading when your resting ?


Currently 95%, down from 96% earlier in the day.

Mine starts low (especially if I have just sat down) and then goes up as I sit still. And, yes, the oxygen helps you live longer by protecting your major organs from oxygen starvation.

Toci is right in saying that the oxygen is primarily there to protect your other organs form oxygen starvation and not necessarily there to stop you getting breathless.... I take my Oximeter to docs/nurses occasionally to compare it to theirs to make sure calibration is ok.

You will drop oxygen levels under any form of exercise (even coughing etc. ) so you should let your Oximeter stabilise when you use it and not look at the first reading .... Incidentally my Oximeter reads 68% when I get up and never above 92% even when I'm hooked up to my jet pack :P :P

Hope this helps


I tested when I got nonin go2. It looked like cheap one was fluctuating rapidly, meaning it was updating often and staying in line with my pulse changes, while the nonin go 2 was much slower to catch up. In the end both were about the same, just had to give it a little while to settle.

Mine tends to go up n down with both readings while I'm sat... Pulse varies between 71 and 89 while oxygen sats are between 92 and 98. Have still got to do my six minute walking test but waiting for my son to be off work so that I feel a little more safer (sounds silly I know). Could go out one evening when my husband gets in but rather my son was there. X

My Oxymeter usually starts off on the higher side and then settles after a min. It does get a little confused if I am in a major AF moment.

The oxymeter readings are very variable. Skin temperature, skin moisture, peeled an onion, used soap or hand cream....all will affect the reading. Even the position of your arm and hand will affect it. Try putting it on another finger or hand....different reading again. It's only meant to be a guide. For accurate blood/oxygen levels, you require a blood test.

Just a note to beware - wildly fluctuating readings can indicate a new battery is required.

According to my COPD Nurse poor circulation can affect readings, also cold fingers.

The only thing that matters is that your O2 reading is 90or above. The meter is ok it is just warming up like most eletronic devices. Sitting still, your reading should be 97 or 98 to be normal. The heart can be starved of 02 below 90 for extended periods.

This does not apply to everyone, Thomasjr as my 'normal' resting rate is 91 - 93.

Are you on two liters of o2? I am on 2 liters and 98 O2, and 93 no 02. I can walk just a few lengths and can drop in the 80's so i am unable to do anything.

I am 83 with emphysema and probably only 20% lung capacity. I have been this way for 8 years, it won't kill you something else will. Use your O2 and keep your reading as high as you can. Your normal is not normal. Take a healthy persons reading you will see near 98.

My 'normal' is normal for me. I also have emphysema and have been an oxygen user for a long time. I have a reading of 76 without oxygen now and use 2 at rest and 6 when moving around. However, I have high CO2 readings also so I have to be careful not to have my oxygen intake too high - or that would kill me! Each of us is different and so we cannot generalise for others. Take care.

I never use the first go with my oximeter, take it off and wait a min then put it on again.

Resting I'm usually about 91/92, if I do move about slowly in the house it will drop to 88/89, walking normally about inside/outside it will drop to 85/85. I have ambutory oxygen now so use that as soon as I have to become more active.

Found I got a bit over anxious and was checking my stats so often that I would get in a bit of a panic.


My oxygen level is 95-96 when sitting. Its actually higher when I'm moving around. Anyone else that way? Kind of backward....


You must have a high pulse rate when you move increasing blood flow and faster breathing?

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