Pulse Oximetry and COVID-19

Returned guest, Dr. Richard Levitan, an airway specialist who has practiced emergency medicine for over 30 years, and co-founder and executive director of Prone2Help, a national 501c3 non-profit organization, discusses pulse oximetry and how it can help in the early diagnosis of COVID-19 because some patients with COVID don’t experience respiratory distress even though their “xrays showed diffuse pneumonia and their oxygen was below normal.”

Dr. Richard Levitan was in the first class of Emergency Medicine residents at Bellevue Hospital (1990-1994), and subsequently worked in academic, high-volume, inner-city trauma hospitals in NYC and Philadelphia for 25 years (Bellevue, Lincoln, Penn, Einstein, Jefferson). Starting in 2012 he began working in rural, critical care access hospitals. He now balances this clinical activity with teaching courses, speaking engagements, and device development. In addition to the Airway Cam (1994), his inventions include the Levitan FPS optical stylet (Clarus Medical), the Control Cric (Pulmodyne Inc.), and the Universal Stylet Bougie (USB, Intersurgical Ltd.). He has been involved in numerous device development projects with various manufacturers. He did early design testing and wrote the first published paper on the I-gel supraglottic airway. Dr. Levitan has designed and built his own unique intubation manikins (with anatomic variation) for teaching laryngoscopy (the Airway Training Series), as well as a unique anatomically correct surgical model (The Airway Cam Surgical Trainer), which uses an inexpensive three-layer skin analogue. He has published extensively on laryngoscopy and airway management, and holds an Adjunct Professor appointment at Dartmouth (Geisel) School of Medicine, as well as a Visiting Professor appointment at the University of Maryland School of Medicine.

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