Thursday, April 1, 2021
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Does the oximeter allow you to say that you breathe less well with a mask?


Video length: 2 min.

France info

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On social networks, more and more parents are measuring the level of oxygen present in the blood of their children after a masked day, to prove that sanitary masks prevent good breathing. But these measurements, taken with an oximeter, can turn out to be completely wrong.
The oximeter has become the essential accessory for anti-masks. On social media, many parents test their children after a masked day to see if they are having trouble breathing. “My daughter, back after three hours of class with a mask, tests her oxygen saturation. 75%! After five minutes without a mask: 95%!“, moved an Internet user. The oximeter calculates the level of oxygen in the blood. It must remain above 90%. But the measurements carried out by these parents have they reliable?

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A journalist from France Télévisions performs a test: after a few hours of wearing her mask, the oximeter shows a rate of 98%. But with a second mask on the face, after a few minutes, the device then displays a rate of 79%. But the device resets, and the displayed rate is 97%. Oximeters are therefore not foolproof, and wearing a mask does not prevent proper breathing. If in doubt, rather than using an oximeter, it is better to go see a doctor.

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