SATURN STILLS / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY SATURN STILLS / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Blood pressure measurement. A man monitors his own blood pressure using an analogue sphygmomanometer. An inflatable cuff (blue) is placed around the upper arm; it is connected to an analogue device with a clock face. The cuff is inflated exerting pressure on the brachial artery to stop blood flow in the arm. The pressure is released, and the separate systolic and diastolic pressures of the pumping and relaxed heart are taken. Blood pressure is read in millimetres of mercury, as a ratio of these two measurements. Blood pressure fluctuates throughout the day, but is an important measure of bodily health.
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