Wearable Sensor Monitors Oxygen Levels Through Skin

Researchers have combined a new oxygen-sensing film with machine learning to create a wearable sensor capable of measuring tissue oxygenation through the skin. The device could continuously monitor a person’s oxygen levels for applications in medicine and sports.

The device comprises a 3D-printed housing, a sensor head, and an adhesive oxygen-sensing film. Electronic components process the sensor data and communicate via Bluetooth or Wi-Fi. The wireless device is easy to operate and communicates wirelessly, making it well-suited for remotely monitoring oxygen levels outside healthcare settings.

The sensor detects the phosphorescence lifetime and intensity of the acrylic oxygen sensing film. Two LEDs in the sensor head excite the oxygen-sensing film with UV light. In response, a photodiode detects the phase of light emitted by the oxygen-sensing film. Phase comparison of the light emitted by the LEDs and the oxygen sensing film provides oxygen level measurement.

The device is suitable for any scenario with compromised blood flow and a lack of oxygen to limbs and tissues. The wearable sensor is helpful for traumatic injuries such as car accidents and battlefield injuries to post-surgical monitoring and wound care. The technology is particularly powerful for medical situations where traditional blood oxygen saturation tools fail to provide adequate information.

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