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Oxygen probe for use with oximeter device, replacement

HCPCS code

Name of the Procedure:

Common Name: Oxygen Probe Replacement
Technical Term: Oxygen probe for use with oximeter device, replacement (HCPCS Code: A4606)


The oxygen probe replacement involves substituting a worn or faulty oxygen sensor on a pulse oximeter with a new one. This sensor attaches to a patient’s finger or earlobe to measure oxygen levels in the blood.


Medical Conditions: Respiratory ailments, sleep apnea, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), and other conditions that necessitate continuous oxygen monitoring.
Goals/Outcomes: Ensure accurate monitoring of oxygen saturation and heart rate to facilitate appropriate medical interventions.


Symptoms/Conditions: Difficulty breathing, persistent hypoxemia (low blood oxygen), or periods of unexplained fatigue.
Patient Criteria: Patients who require continuous or frequent monitoring of oxygen levels due to chronic respiratory conditions.


Pre-procedure Instructions: Generally, no specific preparations are needed. However, the patient's skin should be clean and free of oils or lotions at the site where the probe will be attached.
Diagnostic Tests/Assessments: There are no additional tests needed specifically for the probe replacement itself.

Procedure Description

  1. Clinical Setup: A healthcare provider ensures that the pulse oximeter device is functioning correctly.
  2. Removal: The existing oxygen probe is gently detached from the device.
  3. Installation: A new oxygen probe is affixed to the oximeter, followed by attaching the sensor to the patient’s finger or earlobe.
  4. Verification: The device is turned on to confirm that the new probe is accurately detecting and displaying oxygen levels and heart rate.

Tools/Equipment: Pulse oximeter device and replacement oxygen probe.
Anesthesia/Sedation: None required.


The entire procedure typically takes about 5 to 10 minutes.


The probe replacement can be performed in various settings, including hospitals, outpatient clinics, home healthcare environments, or during routine check-ups.


Healthcare Professionals: Usually performed by nurses, respiratory therapists, or trained medical assistants.

Risks and Complications

Common Risks: Skin irritation or minor discomfort at the probe attachment site.
Rare Risks: Incorrect readings due to improper probe placement or malfunctioning equipment. Management includes repositioning the probe or replacing it again.


Expected Benefits: Accurate and reliable monitoring of oxygen saturation levels can be immediately realized, allowing for prompt medical response if necessary. Provides critical data for managing chronic respiratory conditions.


Post-procedure Care: No specific care is required post-procedure.
Expected Recovery Time: Immediate, as this is a non-invasive procedure.
Restrictions/Follow-up: None, although continuous monitoring as per the underlying condition’s requirement must be upheld.


Other Treatment Options: In the absence of an oxygen probe, alternative methods like arterial blood gas (ABG) tests can be used to measure oxygen levels, but these are invasive and less convenient.
Pros and Cons: Pulse oximeters with probes provide real-time, non-invasive monitoring compared to alternatives which may provide more precise data but are more invasive and less suited for continuous monitoring.

Patient Experience

During Procedure: Patients might feel slight pressure or discomfort at the site where the probe is attached.
After Procedure: Generally, no significant discomfort. Any minor irritation at the attachment site typically resolves quickly. Pain management is usually not necessary given the non-invasive nature of the procedure.

Comfort measures include ensuring proper fit and repositioning the probe periodically to prevent irritation.

Medical Policies and Guidelines for Oxygen probe for use with oximeter device, replacement

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