What about Blood pressure?

What about Blood pressure?

Image courtesy of markuso at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Image courtesy of markuso at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Blood pressure or vascular pressure is one of the vital signs that is being measured or checked to assess the patient’s level of physical functioning.


Blood pressure starts at the heart. Every time the heart beats, it squeezes down the chambers. When chambers are compressed, blood squirts into the artery and puts pressure on the walls of the artery.


The pressure of the blood decreases as blood circulates through the blood vessels – arteries, capillaries and veins. Arteries are responsible for carrying the blood away from the heart. Capillaries enable the exchange of water and chemicals between the blood and the tissues, while veins carry blood from the capillaries back to the heart.


Blood pressure is also known as arterial pressure. It is usually measured through the use of a sphygmomanometer, a meter device that has an inflatable cuff – which limits the blood flow, and a mercury or mechanical manometer to measure the pressure.


Millimeter of mercury (mmHg) is the unit being used in getting the blood pressure or vascular pressure.


A patient’s blood pressure is expressed in terms of the systolic pressure and diastolic pressure. Systolic pressure is the actual beat or squeeze of the heart; the first sound when the blood is injected in the arteries and occurs before the beginning of cardiac cycle. This makes the top number of the blood pressure.


Diastolic arterial pressure occurs in between the heart beats or at the resting phase of the cardiac cycle. This makes the lower number of the blood pressure.


The normal blood pressure for adult human is 120 mmHg systolic and 80 mmHg diastolic, written as 120/80 mmHg or can be spoken as “one twenty over eighty.”


The measures of arterial pressure changes throughout the day as cardiac cycle occur 24 hours a day. There are other factors why measures of blood pressure changes: stress, nutrition, drugs, or diseases.


The most common diseases of blood pressure are hypertension and hypotension. Hypertension is also called high blood pressure. It is the abnormal elevation of blood pressure. Hypotension is an abnormally low blood pressure.

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