LEA PATERSON / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY LEA PATERSON / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
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Blood pressure reading on a woman using a sphygmomanometer. An inflatable cuff has been placed around the upper arm, and is inflated until it cuts off the blood flow. It is then slowly deflated while listening to the elbow pulse (stethoscope, lower left). Pulsing blood flow resumes at systolic pressure, while smooth blood flow resumes at dystolic pressure. The pressure measurement here is 64 millimetres of mercury (mmHg). A healthy set of blood pressure readings typically should not exceed 120 mmHg (systolic) and 80 mmHg (dystolic). Low dystolic blood pressure would be a reading below 60 mmHg.
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