SAMUEL ASHFIELD / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY SAMUEL ASHFIELD / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Blood pressure measurement. General practice doctor using a stethoscope to listen to blood flow during blood pressure measurement. A cuff (blue) is connected to a gauge (sphygmomanometer, far left) that displays the pressure. Blood pressure is measured by inflating the cuff until it stops the flow of blood. It is then slowly deflated until normal flow resumes. The patient's blood pressure is expressed as the pressure of the beating heart as blood flow resumes (systolic) and the pressure of the heart between pumps when the cuff is completely deflated (diastolic). High blood pressure (hypertension) can cause heart failure and kidney damage.
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