My husband has IPF. I know that he should keep his O2 above 90, but was wondering what happens if it periodically dips too low when he is sleeping. He usually stays at around 93 when sleeping - but every once in a while (if he is very tired or has had a couple of drinks) it dips to 85-86. Should we be concerned?
Also, what is a normal O2 for sleeping? Does everyone's drop some at night?
The oxygen saturation in the blood is normally 90% or above even during sleep. At night everyone breathes more shallow and less often. Generally this does not cause a drop in the oxygen saturation. When this is combined with a breathing problem, then the oxygen saturation may drop. The workload on the heart is increased when the oxygen saturation stays below 90%. Over time this will cause the heart to get large and work less efficiently. Using supplemental oxygen to keep the oxygen saturation above 90% most of the time will help to lighten the workload on the heart so that it doesn
Oxygen levels should remain at or above 89 (ideally, at or above 90) all the time. Alcohol is a depressant; depressants CAN make our breathing more shallow and lower our oxygen saturation rates, as it appears to do in your husband's case.
You are correct that most of us have lower oxygen saturation rates while we are sleeping than while we are awake. In an individual with no lung problems, oxygen saturation rates awake or asleep at sea level are 95-100%. Many individuals with lung problems DO require supplemental oxygen only for sleep and/or exertion, to adequately maintain their saturation rates above 90.
If bodies frequently or constantly have oxygen rates under 89 or 90%, our bodies will have increasing problems which can include permanent heart damage and other ills.
You should talk to your husband's doctors about your observations, so s/he can make a proper determination as to any supplemental oxygen needs your husband may have.
Thanks to both of you for your help. I've been checking his O2 on and off at night for a while, and it seldom goes under 90 - so I guess I shouldn't worry. I will check into getting a real sleep study done just to be safe.
Copyright 1994-2016MedHelp International.All rights reserved. MedHelp is a division of Aptus Health.
The Content on this Site is presented in a summary fashion, and is intended to be used for educational and entertainment purposes only. It is not intended to be and should not be interpreted as medical advice or a diagnosis of any health or fitness problem, condition or disease; or a recommendation for a specific test, doctor, care provider, procedure, treatment plan, product, or course of action. Med Help International, Inc. is not a medical or healthcare provider and your use of this Site does not create a doctor / patient relationship. We disclaim all responsibility for the professional qualifications and licensing of, and services provided by, any physician or other health providers posting on or otherwise referred to on this Site and/or any Third Party Site. Never disregard the medical advice of your physician or health professional, or delay in seeking such advice, because of something you read on this Site. We offer this Site AS IS and without any warranties. By using this Site you agree to the following Terms and Conditions. If you think you may have a medical emergency, call your physician or 911 immediately.