Top 10 Pulse Oximeters of 2023: A comprehensive guide to choose the best Pulse Oximeter

Avatar Joanna Taylor10 months ago
Medically Reviewed by Dr. Jasmine O'Connell, PhD in Health Informatics

As medical professionals, we have recently conducted a thorough assessment of the top 10 pulse oximeters available in the market. The evaluation process involved testing the accuracy of each pulse oximeter’s readings for oxygen saturation levels, ease of use, and additional features such as data storage and connectivity. To ensure the highest level of accuracy, we utilized the Contec MS100 Pulse Oximeter Simulator, which simulates SpO2 and pulse rate values, to test the accuracy and reliability of each pulse oximeter’s readings.

In the following sections, we provide a detailed review of each pulse oximeter from a medical standpoint, including an overview of features, pros and cons, expert opinion, and rating. By the end of this article, readers will have a comprehensive guide to help them make an informed decision when choosing the best pulse oximeter for their oxygen saturation monitoring needs.

 

Best Pulse Oximeter of 2023

BEST OVERALL

DocExperts Rating

★★★★★ 5.0

Oxiline Pulse XS Pro

DocExperts Rating

★★★★★ 5.0

Pros

  • FDA Cleared
  • Lifetime Warranty
  • Most Accurate SpO2
  • Bright OLED Display
  • Great Smartphone App

Cons

  • Does not Include Travel Pouch

Buy Now

View at Oxiline

Customer Reviews ★★★★★ 1,730

Why we picked it

The Pulse XS Pro is a smart oximeter that is incredibly accurate and easy to use. This device made the top of our list because it excels in all main areas. It is accurate enough to be used in a medical setting, yet not complicated so that anyone can use it. The digits are displayed in a bright and high-contrast OLED display which makes it easy to read outdoors too. It displays results in under 5 seconds, making it one of the fastest that we tested. As a smart oximeter, it connects with smartphone apps to display live readings, past results, and historical trends and allows for easy export of data. Additionally, Oxiline offers a lifetime warranty and will replace the device if it encounters any functional issues. Overall, the Pulse XS Pro checks all the boxes, and it’s the ideal solution for general health users as well as medical practitioners. 

Accuracy Report

The Pulse XS Pro scored excellent results with a +/- 1.5% deviation from the results displayed by the Contec SpO2 simulator. It also showed consistently accurate readings at 70-80, 80-90, and 90-99 ranges. Overall this a dependable and accurate device. Keep in mind that other factors such as finger size, nail length, nail polish and skin pigmentation may alter the results on other users. 

Product Specs

App Connectivity: Bluetooth

Includes: Pulse XS Pro monitor, 2 AAA batteries, Lifetime Warranty

Measures: Blood Oxygen (SpO2), Heartbeats per minute, and Perfusion Index (PI) numerically and in wavelength form.

#2 Top Pulse Oximeters

DocExperts Rating

★★★★☆ 4.0

Massimo MightySat

DocExperts Rating

★★★★☆ 4.0

Pros

  • Dependable Accuracy
  • Great Display
  • Great Features

Cons

  • Most Expensive at $250
  • Difficult to Interpret All Data

Buy Now

View at Massimo

Customer Reviews ★★★★ 253

Why we picked it

The Massimo Mighty Sat pulse oximeter is a complete pulse oximeter packed with features. This medical-grade device not only provides SpO2, perfusion index, and BPM, but it also provides Pleth variability and Breaths per minute. It is smartphone-enabled and connects with a great app. The design and build are sturdy and feel very durable. However, this device is designed more for medical practitioners than at-home consumers. It has a more professional interface and provides data that most people would not know how to interpret. Users mention that these other metrics generate worry since they do not fully understand how to interpret them. Nonetheless, the Mighty Sat is a good pulse oximeter, it may just be more than what most need, and at $225, it is a tall price to pay.

Accuracy Report

As you would expect, the MightySat scored an excellent +/- 2% deviation from the results displayed by the Contec SpO2 simulator. Almost identical to the Pulse XS Pro results. It also showed consistently accurate readings at 70-80, 80-90, and 90-99 ranges. Overall this is a dependable and accurate device. Keep in mind that other factors such as finger size, nail length, nail polish, and skin pigmentation may alter the results on other users.

Product Specs

App Connectivity: Bluetooth

Includes: MightySat monitor, 2 AAA batteries, and lanyard.

Measures: Blood Oxygen (SpO2), Heartbeats per minute, Perfusion Index (PI), Pleth Variability, and Breaths per Minute.

 

#2 Top Pulse Oximeter

DocExperts Rating

★★★★☆ 4.0

Wellue O2Ring

DocExperts Rating

★★★★☆ 4.0

Pros

  • Small and Portable
  • Innovative Design
  • Great App
  • Acceptable Accuracy

Cons

  • Not Universal Fit
  • Ok Accuracy
  • High Cost

Buy Now

View at Wellue

Customer Reviews ★★★★ 740

Why we picked it

The Wellue O2Ring oximeter is a small device that is extremely portable. It easily fits inside the palm of your hand and instead of measuring through your fingertip, it is inserted as a ring on your finger. Once placed it can be a very comfortable solution, however, it does meet issues with larger or smaller than usual finger sizes in which the ring may not fit well. Additionally, we found the display size to be smaller than desired. Some older patients have issues with determining the displayed data. Thankfully it is accompanied by an excellent smartphone app that does include live readings, past results, and more. At $160 the O2Ringt is a solid device that approaches oximetry differently and still provides reliability.

Accuracy Report

The Wellue O2Ring scored +/- 6% deviation from the results displayed by the Contec SpO2 simulator. However, since the device design does not fit well on the simulator, we also tested it with a vital sign monitor in which it scored +/- 4% it is important to note that out of 3 people testing the device 2 had issues with the fit. In one case the device was loose on all fingers and in the other it only fit well on the thumb. Definitely check your finger size before purchasing this device. Keep in mind that other factors such as finger size, nail length, nail polish, and skin pigmentation may alter the results on other users.

Product Specs

App Connectivity: Bluetooth

Includes: Wellue O2Ringr, 2 AAA batteries, lanyard.

Measures: Blood Oxygen (SpO2), Heartbeats per minute, and Perfusion Index (PI).

#3 Top Pulse Oximeter

DocExperts Rating

★★★☆☆ 3.8

Aluratek Digital Pulse Oximeter

DocExperts Rating

★★★☆☆ 3.8

Pros

  • Fast Readings
  • Good Display
  • Durable Design

Cons

  • Subpar Accuracy
  • Not a Smart Device

Buy Now

View at Aluratek

Customer Reviews ★★★★☆ 28

Why we picked it

The Aluratek pulse oximeter is a solid overall device that provides fast readings. This pulse ox does show results in under 5 seconds. The display has good contrast and is easy to read. The interior finger insert area is lined with rubber which helps maintain the finger in place. The overall build is solid and feels durable. This device does not connect with smartphones and only provides live readings. Additionally, the accuracy is sub par (learn why on the following section).

Accuracy Report

The Aluratek pulse oximeter scored  +/- 7% deviation from the results displayed by the Contec SpO2 simulator. Although it may seem like a lot, this deviation is considered acceptable in at-home use oximeters. We do not recommend this device, or any other which scores over +/- 5% deviation to users suffering from medical conditions. Keep in mind that other factors such as finger size, nail length, nail polish, and skin pigmentation may alter the results on other users.

Product Specs

App Connectivity: None

Includes: Aluratek pulse oximeter, 2 AAA batteries, lanyard.

Measures: Blood Oxygen (SpO2), Heartbeats per minute, and Perfusion Index (PI)

#4 Top Pulse Oximeter

DocExperts Rating

★★★☆☆ 3.5

iHealth Air Pulse Oximeter

DocExperts Rating

★★★☆☆ 3.5

Pros

  • Durable Build
  • Great App

Cons

  • Weak Display Brightness
  • Subpar Accuracy

Buy Now

View at iHealth

Customer Reviews ★★★☆☆ 370

Why we picked it

The iHealth Air pulse oximeter made the top 5 of our list thanks to its insightful app. This smart device provides all the main oximetry readings and it connects to a great smartphone app. It does have slightly subpar accuracy similar to the Aluratek, however, it scored lower because of its display. The screen is an LCD dot display that is legible in dark environments, yet struggles with more ambient light. That sort of display is definitely not ideal for a device that must be versatile for daily use.

Accuracy Report

The iHealth Air pulse oximeter scored  +/- 7% deviation from the results displayed by the Contec SpO2 simulator. Although it may seem like a lot, this deviation is considered acceptable in at-home use oximeters. We do not recommend this device, or any other which scores over +/- 5% deviation to users suffering from medical conditions. Keep in mind that other factors such as finger size, nail length, nail polish, and skin pigmentation may alter the results on other users.

Product Specs

App Connectivity: Bluetooth

Includes: iHealth Air pulse oximeter, 2 AAA batteries, lanyard.

Measures: Blood Oxygen (SpO2), Heartbeats per minute, and Perfusion Index (PI)

Others Pulse Oximeters Considered

These Pulse Oximeters did not make it to the top 5 list based on inconsistent accuracy and other negative patient reports.

  1. CareSense Feliz
  2. Auvon
  3. Ikza
  4. Zacurate
  5. Metene TD-4116

 

Evaluation Process

A recent study conducted by a team of experts aimed to identify the top 10 pulse oximeters available in the market. The study involved several stages of evaluation, including comparing the pulse oximeter readings to those obtained from a pulse oximeter simulator, as well as a patient review panel to evaluate ease of use and other factors.

The Contec MS100 Pulse Oximeter Simulator is used to simulate SpO2 and pulse rate values to test the accuracy and reliability of pulse oximeter readings. It is designed to produce consistent results when used with a specific pulse oximeter, ensuring the device is functioning properly.

In the study, a group of patients requiring oxygen saturation monitoring was given a set of pulse oximeters to use for a period of time. They were asked to evaluate the ease of use, design, and overall functionality of the pulse oximeters, as well as any other relevant factors such as connectivity, app integration, and additional features like data tracking and analysis. The results of the patient review were combined with the accuracy measurements obtained from the pulse oximeter simulator to create a comprehensive evaluation of each pulse oximeter.

 

Final Thoughts

Pulse oximeters can be a valuable tool for people looking to monitor their oxygen saturation levels and manage their health. The top 10 pulse oximeters ranked by DocReview experts provide a range of features that go beyond just SpO2 measurement, such as data tracking, app integration, and reminders for testing or medication.

When choosing a pulse oximeter, it’s important to consider factors such as accuracy, connectivity, user-friendliness, additional features, and value for money. The Oxiline Pulse Oximeter X Pro was ranked as the best pulse oximeter due to its high accuracy, user-friendly app, and useful additional features such as customizable reminders and local weather information.

However, the best pulse oximeter for an individual may depend on their specific needs and preferences. For example, the Oxiline Pulse Ox X Pro provides comprehensive data tracking and analysis, making it an ideal choice for those who want to closely monitor their oxygen saturation levels and trends.

Overall, the top 10 pulse oximeters ranked by DocReview experts are all high-quality options that provide accurate readings and useful features. By using this article as a guide, readers can make an informed decision when choosing a pulse oximeter that best fits their needs.

 

FAQ

Q: What is a pulse oximeter?

Pulse oximetry is achieved by a painless, noninvasive device that measures the saturation of oxygen in a person’s blood. Oxygen saturation, also known as SpO2 is a key metric of how well the lungs are working. In addition to SpO2, most pulse oximeters also display heartbeats per minute and perfusion index. The perfusion index measures how well blood circulates in a specific part of your body. The perfusion index does that using a comparison of the amount of oxygen-carrying blood in the area vs. the volume of blood not carrying oxygen.

Q: How does a pulse oximeter work?

The pulse oximeter uses a cold light source that shines a light through the fingertip, making the tip appear to be red. By analyzing the light from the light source that passes through the finger, the device is able to determine the percentage of oxygen in the red blood cell.

Q: Are pulse oximeters accurate?

FDA-cleared prescription pulse oximeters are required to have a minimum average (mean) accuracy that is demonstrated by desaturation studies done on healthy patients. This testing compares the pulse oximeter saturation readings to arterial blood gas saturation readings for values between 70-100%. The typical accuracy (reported as Accuracy Root Mean Square or Arms) of recently FDA-cleared pulse oximeters is within 2 to 3% of arterial blood gas values. This generally means that during testing, about 66% of SpO2 values were within 2 or 3% of blood gas values and about 95% of SpO2 values were within 4 to 6% of blood gas values, respectively.

Q: Can pulse oximeter connect to other devices?

Yes, many smart pulse oximeters can connect to other devices such as smartphones, fitness trackers, and smartwatches through Bluetooth or Wi-Fi. This allows users to track their measurements over time, receive personalized insights and recommendations, and share data with their healthcare providers.

Q: What additional features do pulse oximeters offer?

In addition to measuring SpO2, many pulse oximeters offer additional features such as data tracking, app integration, customizable reminders, and the ability to store multiple readings for future reference.

Q: Are pulse oximeters worth the cost?

Blood oxygen is a valuable metric that is relevant for healthy people as well as those suffering from health conditions. As it is with all things relevant to health, prevention is the best medicine. Pulse oximetry may be a key indicator to warn a user of a potential health risk, therefore, we believe it is worth the cost. Knowing more about your health status ahead of time may save you money and more importantly help you stay healthy.

Q: Can pulse oximeters be used by multiple users?

Pulse oximeters can be used by multiple users. Smart pulse oximeters also allow for multiple profile creations on the respective apps, which allow each user to maintain their data safe and separate from one another.

Q: What is a normal blood oxygen (SpO2) measurement?

96-99% SpO2 is considered a normal and healthy measurement. Always consult with your doctor to determine what is normal for you.

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Joanna Taylor

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