The AccuMed CMS-50DL Pulse Oximeter measures SpO2 and pulse rate in 10 seconds, has a 24-hour battery life, and over 1,500 reviews on Amazon.
Accurately monitoring your blood oxygen levels using pulse oximetry can be useful for a range of physical activities, such as hiking or cycling.
But how accurate is the AccuMed CMS-50DL Oximeter, and is it worth buying?
In this review, we’ll guide you through the design features, customer feedback, warranty coverage, and how to achieve the most accurate readings.
We’ve also included comparisons with similar devices, to help you decide if this is the best pulse oximeter for home use.
The most important feature of any pulse oximeter is accuracy. Without accurate, reproducible readings, you’re not getting good value for money.
AccuMed currently have thousands of positive reviews on Amazon, most of which praise the accuracy of their oximeters.
But what about more advanced features, like a rotating display, pleth waveform, or data transfer?
A multi-directional display makes it easier to view your Sp02 and pulse rate results from a variety of angles. This makes it easier for both caregivers and individuals taking their own readings.
Unfortunately, the CMS-50DL has a fixed display, which faces away from the user. This means it’s better suited to caregivers.
For just a few dollars more, the AccuMed CMS-50D and CMS-50D1 are similar oximeters that include the rotating display. They can also display a plethysmograph, which isn’t available on the CMS-50DL.
Some of the top oximeters include audible alarms to alert you when your blood oxygen level (Sp02) or pulse rate exceed upper and lower limits. The AccuMed CMS-50DL doesn’t have this feature, but the Zacurate 500D, Innovo Deluxe, and Vive Precision Oximeter do.
A carry case is a useful addition that isn’t included with Zacurate oximeters, while the lanyard helps keep the CMS-50DL to hand if you need to take readings throughout the day.
How is it Powered?
The AccuMed CMS-50DL is powered by 2 x AAA batteries, giving the device a total weight of around 50g. Unfortunately there’s no way to charge using an AC adapter or use the oximeter without batteries.
This is standard for home oximeters, and after thousands of reviews, has proven to be the most reliable method of power for accurate, consistent Sp02 and pulse readings. There’s also a low battery indicator to remind you when to change the batteries so low power doesn’t interfere with reading accuracy.
Battery life is shorter than most oximeters, at 24 hours. This is compared to 30 hours for the Zacurate 500DL, and 40 hours for the Zacurate 500D and 430-DL.
Some companies, such as Aupalla, have attempted to revolutionize oximeters by removing the need for batteries and adding a connection to your phone. You can then download the Aupalla app and view your results on the phone screen.
But the technology isn’t reliable, and review ratings are weighed down by poor connectivity and lack of compatibility with certain types of phone.
AccuMed CMS-50DL – Product Summary
- Accurately measures blood oxygen level and pulse rate in 8-10 seconds
- SpO2 and Pulse Rate are graphed on the bright LED display
- Fits all finger sizes, from kids above four years old to adults
- Automatically powers off when not in use
- Delivers up to 24 continuous hours of battery life
- Every AccuMed oximeter is supplied with a convenient travel case
- Ideal for sports such as running, hiking or cycling, or while traveling in an aircraft
- Available Colors: Black, Blue, Pink, White, and Yellow
- Included: 2 x AAA batteries, lanyard, silicone cover, and travel case
- Upgraded 50D model offers screen brightness adjustment and 32 hours continuous battery life
Accuracy and Ease of Use
Tips for Accurate Pulse Oximetry
The most common reasons customers gave for lower review ratings on Amazon relate to accuracy.
That’s why we’ve added a quick guide for how to achieve the most accurate Sp02 and pulse readings with the AccuMed CMS-50DL:
- Ensure batteries are installed correctly
- Open the clamp
- Insert finger into the clip, with your fingernail facing upwards towards the screen
- Ensure your fingertip is directly in between the LED light source and LED sensor
- Release the clamp
- Press the button on front of the device once
- Keep finger and body still while the oximeter is taking its readings
What Should You Avoid?
Poor blood circulation can cause inaccurate or results. Warm your hands and fingers before taking the reading to increase blood flow.
The World Health Organisation (WHO) has also advised against wearing nail varnish or allowing bright light to enter the sensor. The color from nail varnish can absorb light from the oximeter and interfere with detection of oxygenated haemoglobin.
Certain medical conditions can also affect the accuracy of pulse oximetry. If you have hypotension, anaemia, tachycardia, hypothermia, or bradycardia, we recommend seeking advice from your physician.
A recent scientific study has shown that the highest Sp02 tends to be in the middle finger of the right hand. Conversely, the lowest is in the middle finger of the left hand, which is why we recommend using the same finger each time.
- 1 year US warranty
Who Are AccuMed?
AccuMed offer a broad range of consumer healthcare products. In addition to their pulse oximeters, they also offer blood pressure monitors, electrotherapy muscle stimulators, and infrared thermometers.
The have a USA-based contact number that’s available for technical support between the hours of 9am and 7pm, Monday to Friday. There’s also an email address for general information and support enquiries, which you can find on the official AccuMed website.
The AccuMed CMS-50DL is their most affordable pulse oximeter, but they also offer 50D and 50D1 models. The main difference being battery life (50DL: 24 hours, 50D: 32 hours, 50D1: 20 hours). Each oximeter is suitable for anyone over the age of 4, and produces Sp02 and pulse rate readings in 8-10 seconds.
What Do Other Reviews Say?
Our own oximeter reviews provide you with in-depth information and comparisons between the best devices.
But it’s also useful to check the feedback from as many people as possible, as not everyone has the same experience.
How easy was it to take a reading? Was customer service helpful and easy to contact? Were the readings accurate, and how comfortable was the fingertip grip?
The problem is, the best oximeters have thousands of reviews, and finding the most valuable information can be time consuming.
That’s why we did the leg work for you.
Listed below you’ll find a summary of the pros and cons for the AccuMed CMS-50DL Oximeter, based on direct customer feedback.
- Many customers tested the accuracy against hospital devices and during cardiologist visits. They found the readings identical or very close to it
- Easy to use
- Protective cover helps prevent the device getting damaged
- Useful for monitoring blood oxygen levels, especially with conditions such as pneumonia, asthma, and COPD
- Carry case and lanyard make it easy to carry around and hang on the side of an oxygen concentrator
- Quickly displays blood oxygen level and pulse rate results
- One of the most affordable oximeters on the market
- Comfortable on the finger, with no awkward pinching
- User manual is well-written, providing detailed operating instructions and tips for accurate results
- LED display makes results easy to read
- Bright color makes the AccuMed CMS-50DL easier to find
- Small and light enough to carry with you during the day
- Difficult to get a reading with young children due to the smaller finger size. If your child is over the age of 2, we recommend the Zacurate Children Oximeter
- Powered by batteries, with no way to charge via USB or AC adapter. Although this is typical of home oximeters, a second method of charging would be a useful improvement
- Display isn’t reversible and can’t be rotated. This means you have to fold your finger towards your palm to view results the correct way up
- Internal rubber cushion is made from a smoother rubber material than some of the more expensive devices, which meant a few customers found it didn’t grip their finger securely