JAMES KING-HOLMES / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY JAMES KING-HOLMES / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Intensive care unit. Doctor uses a stethoscope to check the heartbeat of an elderly man in an intensive care unit. Attached to the man's body are electrocardiogram chest electrodes, a pulsemeter and a blood gas probe. A vital signs monitor (top right corner) records the patient's blood pressure, heart rate, blood oxygen and respiration rate. If any of these signs become abnormal an alarm will sound. A naso-gastric tube is attached to the patient's nose. This kind of care unit is required for patients who are recovering from a heart attack, major surgery or are unconscious.
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