The Nasal Alar Sp02 Sensor
Accurate long-term pulse oximetry monitoring with greater patient
comfort, lower cost and application beyond the ICU.
The Nasal Alar Sp02 Sensor
Attached to the nasal ala, the fleshy part of the side of the nose, a unique monitoring site for pulse oximetry. This site is fed by both the external and internal carotid arteries; the latter also supplies blood to the brain. The rich vascular supply to the ala provides a strong, reliable signal, even when it is difficult to get a signal at the fingertips.
This new sensor is compatible with the majority of pulse oximetry monitors used in many healthcare settings. Established in the USA as a first choice for a variety low perfusion conditions. Pentland Medical is now marketing this product in the UK.
Use and Advantages of the Nasal Alar SpO2 Sensor
Unlike fingertip sensors, where signals can easily be lost, the Nasal Alar SpO2 Sensor detects changes in oxygen saturation from the nasal ala, a highly vascular region that is fed by both the external and internal carotid arteries, providing strong and reliable photoplethysmography signals that respond rapidly to changes in arterial oxygen saturation. The nasal alar site is very robust and offers the following advantages:
• Lack of sympathetic tone means no signal loss due to reduced
temperature or anxiety.
• Minimal effects by diminished peripheral perfusion.
• Less susceptible to sensor interference from ambient light.
• Consistent accuracy at very low oxygen saturations.
• Less likely to be dislodged.
• Easily accessed during surgery.
• Comfortable and easily removed and reapplied for use during
the patient’s hospital stay.
• Easily repositioned due to non-adhesive attachment.
Clinical Evaluation of the Nasal Alar SpO2 Sensor
Several recent studies support the feasibility and accuracy of Nasal Alar SpO2 Sensor beyond its role in the operating theatre, for patients with acute, chronic or long-term medical conditions.
A usability and acceptance study in a non-hospital setting showed that 50 subjects could wear the sensor for seven days, and when compared to a finger pulse oximeter, the Nasal Alar SpO2 Sensor was more comfortable and interfered less with daily living activities. Furthermore, there were no reported complications associated with skin pressure complications.
Cost: Nasal Alar SpO2 Sensor
The Nasal Alar SpO2 Sensor costs less than £20, patient studies have shown that they are durable, indicating a significant long-term cost saving (6); although digital and forehead sensors can initially cost less, respectively, with the average stay in ICU being 3.8 days (in the USA), these devices normally require replacement (6) incurring greater costs long-term. The Alar sensor is a single patient device good for continuous use up to 28 days. Simply, check the sensor every 8 hours
and change sides every 24 hours.
In conclusion, these results indicate that the Nasal Alar SpO2 Sensor can be used comfortably, safely, effectively and at relatively low cost, not only in the operating room during anaesthesia or in intensive care but also in a variety of situations within and outside the hospital.