PhO2: Smartphone based Blood Oxygen Level Measurement Systems using Near-IR and RED Wave-guided Light

Accurately measuring and monitoring patient's blood oxygen level plays a critical role in today’s clinical diagnosis and healthcare practices. Existing techniques however either require a dedicated hardware or produce inaccurate measurements. To fi€ll in this gap, we propose a phone-based oxygen level estimation system, called PhO2, using camera and flashlight functions that are readily available on today’s off-the-shelf smart phones. Since phone’s camera and flashlight are not made for this purpose, utilizing them for oxygen level estimation poses many challenges. We introduce a cost-effective add-on together with a set of algorithms for spatial and spectral optical signal modulation to amplify the optical signal of interest while minimizing noise. A light-based pressure detection algorithm and feedback mechanism are also proposed to mitigate the negative impacts of user’s behavior during the measurement. We also derive a non-linear referencing model that allows PhO2 to estimate the oxygen level from color intensity ratios produced by smartphone’s camera. An evaluation using a custom-built optical element on COTS smartphone with 6 subjects shows that PhO2 can estimate the oxygen saturation within 3.5% error rate comparing to FDA-approved gold standard pulse oximetry. A user study to gauge the reception of PhO2 shows that users are comfortable self-operating the device, and willing to carry the device when going out.