Centre Recommends ‘6 Minute Walking Test’ To Check Hypoxia i
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The Centre on June 14 recommended a ‘six minute walking test’ to check hypoxia in the human body. Hypoxia is a medical condition where enough quantities of oxygen do not make it to the tissues and cells. The common symptoms are shortness of breath, frequent coughs, wheezing, feeling of choking etc.

The ministry of information and broadcasting tweeted that the walking test to check Hypoxia is recommended for asymptomatic, mild and moderate patients of the coronavirus disease (Covid-19) who are being treated at home. Here are the steps which have to be followed during the test:

1. Record oxygen saturation using an Oximeter.

2. Walk around a room for six minutes continuously with the oximeter attached to the finger and observe the reading.

3. Record oxygen saturation soon after walking.

4. The test can be repeated every six to eight hours.

5. Consult a doctor if the saturation goes below 94 per cent or there is an absolute drop of 3-5 per cent. People should also consult a doctor if they feel unwell (lightheaded, short of breath) while performing the walking test or at the end of six minutes.

6. People older than 70 years, those with uncontrolled asthma and pregnant patients should avoid doing this test.

The Centre has time and again highlighted the importance of keeping oxygen levels in check. In April, a major number of critically infected patients lost the battle to the viral disease as their oxygen levels dropped sharply. Due to an enormous spike in hospitalisations during this month, hospitals grappled with a severe shortage of the life saving gas. In May, the Centre had recommended a deep breathing exercise which it said can help people in recovery after getting infected with Covid-19.

Apart from this, another exercise called self-proning, is extremely beneficial in patients with compromised breathing effort, especially when they are being treated in home isolation. However, it is only recommended when a patient faces difficulty in breathing and the oxygen saturation is below 94.

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