Performance of a novel reusable pediatric pulse oximeter probe

Carina King, Tisungane Mvalo, Kristen Sessions, Iain Wilson, Isabeau Walker, Beatiwel Zadutsa, Charles Makwenda, Tambosi Phiri, Nicholas Boyd, Mike Bernstein, Eric D. McCollum

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations


Objective: To assess the performance of reusable pulse oximeter probe and microprocessor box combinations, of varying price-points, in the context of a low-income pediatric setting. Methods: A prospective, randomized cross-over study comparing time to biologically plausible oxygen saturation (SpO2) between: (1) Lifebox LB-01 probe with Masimo Rad-87 box (L + M) and (2) a weight-appropriate reusable Masimo probe with Masimo Rad-87 box (M + M). A post hoc secondary analysis comparison with historical usability testing data with the Lifebox LB-01 probe and Lifebox V1.5 box (L + L) was also conducted. Participants, children aged 0 to 35 months, were recruited from pediatric wards and outpatient clinics in the central region of Malawi. The primary outcome was time taken to achieve a biologically plausible SpO 2 measurement, compared using t tests for equivalence. Results: We recruited 572 children. Plausible SpO2 measurements were obtained in less than 1 minute, 71%, 70%, and 63% for the M + M, L + M, and L + L combinations, respectively. A similar pattern was seen for less than 2 minutes, however, this effect disappeared at less than 5 minutes with 96%, 96%, and 95% plausible measurements. Using a ±10 second threshold for equivalence, we found L + M and M + M to be equivalent, but were under-powered to assess equivalence for L + L. Conclusions: The novel reusable pediatric Lifebox probe can achieve a quality SpO2 measurement within a pragmatic time range of weight-appropriate Masimo equivalent probes. Further research, which considers the cost of the devices, is needed to assess the added value of sophisticated motion tolerance software.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1052-1059
Number of pages8
JournalPediatric pulmonology
Issue number7
StatePublished - Jul 2019


  • LMIC
  • hypoxemia
  • pediatric
  • pulse oximeter

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
  • Pulmonary and Respiratory Medicine


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