Pulse Oximetry Screening for Critical Congenital Heart Diseases: The Current Status

Yip Wai Yan, Abdul Haium Abdul Alim, Victor Samuel Rajadurai

Abstract

Delayed diagnosis of critical congenital heart disease (CCHD) contributes to increased morbidity and mortality. Pulse oximetry screening method has been evaluated extensively and has been found to be an effective complement to prenatal ultrasound and physical examination in the detection of CCHD in healthy-appearing newborns. In addition to CCHD, pulse oximetry screening also detects other significant illnesses such as sepsis and pulmonary pathologies that require immediate treatment. Factors affecting the accuracy of pulse oximetry screening include screening age (before vs after 24 h of age), screening site (both pre- and postductal vs postductal alone), cut-off criteria, and clinical setting. In this article, various barriers and limitations of pulse oximetry screening are discussed. The first-year results of pulse oximetry screening program in the setting of good prenatal detection are also presented.

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