JIM VARNEY / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY JIM VARNEY / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Measuring blood pressure. Elderly patient having her standing blood pressure measured using a sphygmomanometer. Taking a patient's standing blood pressure reveals whether they have postural hypotension, a condition where a fall in blood pressure after standing up results in a head rush or dizziness. The healthcare worker is listening to the patient's pulse using a stethoscope and inflating the patient's arm cuff (not seen), which temporarily cuts off the blood flow. As it deflates, blood flow resumes and a reading of the pressure is taken.
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