Pulse oximetry to soon help detect heart problems in babies?

2 May 2012

Newborn babies should be screened for heart problems with the aid of a simple procedure, new research has concluded.

The British Heart Foundation (BHF) has analysed 13 previous studies and found plenty of advantages regarding a screening method called pulse oximetry.

As a result of the research, which has been published in The Lancet, the organisation is calling for the test to be adopted internationally to measure blood oxygen levels in babies.

Professor Peter Weissberg, medical director of the BHF, gave his backing to the increased use of pulse oximetry.

He explained: "It is a simple, cheap and non-invasive test, but it will have to be supported by echocardiography services to determine the nature of the heart defect in babies with low oxygen levels."

Meanwhile, American researchers have carried out their own study and suggested that molecules called microRNAs have the means to transform scarred tissue back into healthy heart muscle cells following a heart attack.

Posted by Philip Briggs

Health News is provided by Adfero in collaboration with Spire Healthcare. Please note that all copy above is ©Adfero Ltd. and does not reflect views or opinions of Spire Healthcare unless explicitly stated. Additional comments on the page from individual Spire consultants do not necessarily reflect the views or opinions of other consultants or Spire Healthcare.

Find a treatment, test or scan available at:


Find a consultant

Use one or more of the options below to search for a consultant and link through to view their Spire profile.


Let us help you

fill out this form and we will get back to you:

Please select a hospital

We can call you

Please enter your details below and we will call you back.

What is the aim of your enquiry?

Please select a hospital

If we are unable to reach you by phone, please include your email address so that we can get in touch...


Diagnostic imaging

© Spire Healthcare Group plc (2016)