Cardiovascular System Essay

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* Pulse rate is a measurement of the number of times the heart beats or the action of the heart in a minute (BPM). * Normally the heart beats around 70 times per minute. * A rate above 100 BPM is tachycardia; a rate below 60 BPM is referred as bradycardia. * It is influenced by exercise, age, gender, size, physical conditions, disease states, medications and feelings such as depression, fear, anxiety and anger. Pulse sites are radial, brachial, carotid, temporal, femoral, popliteal, dorsalis pedis. * Apical pulse rate is the heart rate counted at the apex of the heart (lower edge of the heart); considered very accurate and is used with infants and young children or a patient on heart meds. It is read for a full minute; check pulse deficit (120/80/40). * Do not use your thumb, it has a pulse and may interfere with accuracy. * Pulse characteristics: volume (force), rhythm (regularity). * During the process of inspiration, oxygen, which is necessary for body cells and life, is taken into the lungs. * During expiration, air containing carbon dioxide is expelled from the lungs as a waste product, * When observing a patient’s respiration, three characteristics should be noted: 1. Rate (adult is 14-20 per minute) * A rate below 12 is bradypnea, or above 40, tachypnea * Respiratory rate is usually at 1:4 proportion of the pulse rate * Factors that affect the rate include elevated temperature, age, pain, medical conditions, extreme pain, emotion and physical conditions. 2. Rhythm is the breathing pattern which occurs at either regular or irregular intervals. 3. Depth of respiration refers to the volume of air being inhaled and exhaled. * Breath sounds include: * Stridor (croup) stertorous such as the sound heard in snoring. * Rales consist of crackling

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