Care of critically ill newborn patients requires regular measurement of arterial oxygenation levels to avoid or limit the risk of hypoxia or hyperoxia.
Hypoxia can lead to situations of pulmonary vasoconstriction and hypertension. Moreover, the resulting impairments of blood flow can themselves lead to neurological consequences or the alteration of other organs.
Hyperoxia is associated with the production of free oxygen radicals that can cause damage to tissues or cells. In neonatology, this process is commonly observed, for example, in premature infants with immature retinal vascularization, which can lead to irreversible damage to the retina (retinopathy of prematurity).
Oxygen supplementation is critical for the survival of many children with respiratory distress. In the neonatal department, when oxygen therapy is undertaken, alone or in addition to other therapies (such as mechanical ventilation, surfactants, etc.), there is an inherent risk of a rapid change in the level of oxygen saturation of the patients. patients, requiring immediate response from the health care team. A method of continuous monitoring of the arterial oxygen level of these patients then becomes crucial and a high priority.
Prof. Daniele De Luca, Head of the Department of Neonatology, Pediatrics and Neonatal Resuscitation, GH Paris Sud