by Amy Sarah Ginsburg, Rasa Izadnegahdar, Keith P Klugman
Lancet Glob Health 2016 – Published Online November 9, 2016
Pneumonia persists as the leading infectious killer of children worldwide. Hypoxaemia is a predictor of mortality from childhood pneumonia, and approximately 1,5 million children with severe pneumonia require oxygen treatment each year. Pulse oximetry and oxygen are key interventions for treating pneumonia and preventing death. Pulse oximetry, the standard for detecting hypoxaemia, is cost-effective and can identify 20–30% more cases than using clinical signs alone. In addition to averting deaths, oximetry helps identify children requiring referral, increases the number of correctly treated severe pneumonia cases, and reduces the incidence of incorrect treatment with antibiotics.