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Wellue O2Ring Oxygen Monitor Review, Enabling CPAP Machine Alternatives

Thank you for sharing your story, Jack Moreland. Our customers tell our story so much better than we do. 

"My name is Jack Moreland. My wife tells me I snore a lot. She eventually persuaded me to have a sleep study performed by Cleveland Clinic. The result was a diagnosis of sleep APNEA and a recommendation for CPAP therapy. I was very concerned until I saw a Sleep Disorders Guide article from Cleveland clinic, and I saw an ad for the Wellue O2Ring.

I am comfortable that Cleveland Clinic, a world-renown medical center, accurately collected and interpreted the results of the data gathered on the night of my sleep study, and made their recommendations in a manner consistent with accepted medical practice. That said, I worried that they based that diagnosis on data from one night. Are all of my nights the same? What does a good night look like? What does a bad night look like? What is the ratio of good nights to bad nights?

The Cleveland Clinic Sleep Disorder Guide provides a list of alternative treatments for milder cases of sleep apnea. The Wellue O2Ring provides ongoing measurement of their effectiveness, i.e. biofeedback.

Wellue O2Ring Oxygen Monitor

My reaction to the diagnosis

I was horrified by the prospect of being tied to a 110v outlet for a CPAP machine when sleeping for the rest of my life. The prices and features vary, but it looks like $1,000 for the portable CPAP I would want. Not cheap. CPAP machines are notorious for poor utilization. A lot of people buy them and then do not use them. They do not look like they are much fun to use either. Not exactly sexy. I had started looking for alternatives when I saw an ad on Facebook for the Wellue O2Ring. I first bought the basic model to try it out.

Remediation is critically important

I also started researching the subject via Google. “The American Sleep Apnea Association estimates that 38,000 people in the United States die each year from heart disease with sleep apnea as a complicating factor. People with sleep apnea have difficulty breathing or stop breathing for short periods while sleeping. June 11, 2019” That death statistic is similar in size to deaths from automobile crashes and deaths from firearms. In other words, ignore the condition at your peril.

Try conservative treatment first

From Cleveland Clinic “Sleep Disorder Guide”, “Conservative treatment may be all that is needed for milder cases of sleep apnea. Lifestyle changes may include losing weight (if overweight), avoiding alcohol and sleeping pills, sleeping on your side, using nasal sprays or breathing strips, and avoiding sleep deprivation. Continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) therapy is often necessary for those with OSA. Special appliances that are placed in the mouth can help those with mild-to-moderate sleep apnea. These appliances prevent the tongue from blocking the throat and help move the lower jaw forward during sleep.”

Please note this is NOT providing a medical recommendation. My medical training does not get far beyond first aid. Every case may be different. People and their medical problems are different. I am sharing my experience. Nothing more. I consult my physician. Everyone should consult their physician.

My Wellue O2Ring

Worn on your thumb or finger. Its presence is barely noticeable.

O2Ring performs three functions:

  1. Collects 1-second interval time series data on heart rate and SPO2. “SpO2 stands for peripheral capillary oxygen saturation, an estimate of the amount of oxygen in the blood. More specifically, it is the percentage of oxygenated hemoglobin (hemoglobin containing oxygen) compared to the total amount of hemoglobin in the blood (oxygenated and non-oxygenated hemoglobin).”
  2. Provides alarms that stimulate me with vibration on my finger if my BPM or SPO2 falls outside of a predetermined range. Fast or slow heart beat; Low blood oxygen. My blood oxygen only goes low when I am asleep. An examination of my data extracts so far shows that my SPO2 levels return to normal within 12-16 seconds of an alarm. Sometimes it awakens me. Alarms usually do NOT awaken me.
  3. Provides raw data, charts and tables for my consumption and to share with my physician.

Wellue O2Ring oxygen monitor

Establishing a baseline

The first three nights, I changed nothing except wearing the O2Ring. The ring wakened me three times in three nights for low blood oxygen. Looking at the charts the next morning, it was plain to see why the APNEA diagnosis had been given. Of course, I have probably had this condition, snoring, for decades. But I did not know I had sleep APNEA; that I was not getting adequate oxygen in my sleep.

Trial Remediation

On the fourth night, I began using Nasacort before going to bed, an Over-the-Counter nasal cortisone spray I had used off and on for years for the discomfort of a stuffy nose caused by 35 years of smoking; I quit 15 years ago. The stuffy nose can make me breathe through my mouth while I am sleeping. Nasacort allows me to consistently breathe through my nose. I also make it a point to sleep on my side, not my back, Another contributor to APNEA. The next night, no alarm. The charted results showed a normal night, no APNEA.

Subsequent Nights

I usually have goods nights now. Nasacort clearly helps me. My physician told me it was OK to use it as directed every night before bed. Nothing I have seen so far tells me I need a CPAP machine, but my personal sleep study continues. After a long string of good nights, as demonstrated by my Scores, I had a couple of not so good nights. The good news is, I learned from the experience, and I have documented hard facts to share with my physician.

One night, I fell asleep on my back partially on the wedge pillow I use for reading in bed. I slept like a stone for 10 hours. I was very tired from lack of sleep the previous night followed by working hard the following day. When I awaken, I check the O2Ring charts. One night (left side) I had moderate sleep APNEA and multiple alarms. My alarm activates at the default 88%. My lowest SPO2 was 85%. I have yet to see it lower. Not good. But not terrible.

You might think this rare event invalidates the rest of my story. I disagree. The O2Ring is a biofeedback device that lets you know when improvements are indicated and motivating improvements in the remediation effort.

  • The information it gave me prompted me to buy and try a mouth appliance, an APNEA remediation device mentioned by the Cleveland Clinic “Sleep Disorders Treatment Guide”. I won’t need it every night, but it is probably a good idea when I am very tired.
  • It was a vivid reminder to NOT sleep on my back.

Jack's sleep reports for o2ring

The alarm thresholds are a setting. I use the defaults for now. My SPO2 alarm activates at 88%. I usually sleep through the alarms. Nonetheless, I can see in the extract file that my SPO2 levels typically return to normal within 12-16 seconds of the alarm.


If I ever get to the point where I am not getting a good night’s sleep because of alarms, or my Scores are frequently below the minimum my physician recommends, I’ll be first in line for a CPAP machine. Based on what I have seen so far, I doubt that will happen anytime soon.

My personal sleep study continues with a goal being the safe personal pursuit of an alternative to CPAP. I’ll use a CPAP if necessary, but I want to avoid it if I can. I have avoided CPAP so far. I also want to be able to share hard facts about my progress with my physician as I proceed. The O2Ring does all of that for me.

Conclusion

The O2Ring is a convenient, affordable way to screen for, if not informally diagnose, sleep APNEA. I’ll leave it for the medical professionals to determine whether it is sufficient for a medical diagnosis. Henceforth, I will be wearing it every night building a data set I can share with medical professionals. I just bought a second O2Ring for my wife. I will be buying more rings as Christmas gifts for my immediate family and that I can temporarily share with friends and/or extended family for screening purposes. A loan is an inexpensive gift with a high value. If they have an APNEA problem, they can buy their own ring.

Recommendation

Yes, I absolutely recommend an O2Ring for everyone, at least for self-screening and sharing with their physician. More information is always a good thing. People with known APNEA or heart trouble should wear it every night for the alarms and data collection whether they also use a CPAP machine or not. People without known APNEA should wear one at least periodically to look for hidden problems they may otherwise know nothing about until they have serious consequences. "

 

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8 comments

  • Is there no desktop computer software for the oxylink? Will there be?

    Christine
  • Why does your ad say
    SAVE $30. ONLY $139.99. LIMITED TIME OFFER.
    But when I try to buy the price is $179 and the discount is only $20 for a total of $159?

    Jeff Ballard
  • Cost for ring?

    Jeff Rosen
  • Need physicians account prices

    Thomas Hobbs MD PHD ND DC PScD
  • Cost and information please

    Doc

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