Low oxygen levels - what is normal? — Scope | Disability forum
If we become concerned about you or anyone else while using one of our services, we will act in line with our safeguarding policy and procedures. This may involve sharing this information with relevant authorities to ensure we comply with our policies and legal obligations.

Find out how to let us know if you're concerned about another member's safety.

Low oxygen levels - what is normal?

kingyclan Member Posts: 17
edited June 2014 in Cerebral palsy
My son has recently had a sleep study revealing his o2 levels drop to 73% at night which is now leading to intervention by way of a mask and oxygen and is looking as though it might prevent much needed scoliosis surgery.

My cousin in NZ also has a son with CP who also has similar night time o2 levels but the drs there have decided that is 'normal' for him and there is no intervention.

Is this a common condition amongst (young) adults with CP? How is it managed for you? Any advice/thoughts?


  • acrossthepond
    acrossthepond Member Posts: 36
    Hi kingyclan,

    I am an adult with CP so the information I am about to share with you might not help answer you question, but here goes nothing.

    About 2 years ago, I began having trouble breathing at night after going to bed. I would gasp for air all night hardly sleeping more than a few minutes at a time. My breathing could be compared to how a goldfish would appear to breath if it was removed, even briefly, from its tank. In daytime, initially, my breathing was normal.

    About two weeks later, I noticed that I began wheezing at night and was somewhat congested. I thought at first that I was developing a cold but during the day everything seemed normal. Unfortunately, that was not the case and days later I ended up at the hospital where I was diagnosed with allergy-induced asthma. I was given emergency treatment and put on daily inhalers. (I had not had any allergies/asthma issues prior to moving).

    In addition, they determined that I had a problem with my thyroid level. It was too low. Once I was put on medication and the level was normalized, everything returned to normal.

    Now, my doctor checks my thyroid level through periodic blood work. So far, the level remain stable and all has been well. Perhaps, if these things are checked, your son's condition will get better and he can have the other surgery he needs. Good luck, J
  • stick2000
    stick2000 Member Posts: 1
    Hi, 73% is quite low. Normal o2 levels are generally 95%+, but anything down to 92% is acceptable. I know that some conditions mean that lower o2 levels are also normal - eg heart conditions can mean sats in the 70s can be normal. When you are asleep your sats drop a bit aswell. Our daughter was on o2 till she was 15 months old, which was administered using nasal cannulae. She has hemiplegic CP but the o2 was due to her original condition which left her lungs in poor condition.

    PS I'm not a doctor or an expert, I can only comment on my experience. Best to discuss with your child's respiratory docs.


Complete our feedback form and tell us how we can make the community better.