Vernier Software and Technology
Vernier Software & Technology

Blood Pressure as a Vital Sign

Figure from experiment 7 from Human Physiology with Vernier

Introduction

Blood pressure is a measure of the changing fluid pressure within the circulatory system. It varies from a peak pressure produced by contraction of the left ventricle, to a low pressure, which is maintained by closure of the aortic valve and elastic recoil of the arterial system. The peak pressure is called systole, and the pressure that is maintained even while the left ventricle is relaxing is called diastole.

Mean arterial pressure (MAP) is not a simple average of the two pressures, because the duration of diastole is twice that of systole. MAP is used by emergency room and intensive care unit personnel as a measure of the adequacy of blood supplied to vital tissues (such as the brain, heart, and kidneys) when the blood pressure is dangerously low.

Objectives

In this experiment, you will

  • Obtain graphical representation of blood pressure.
  • Compare blood pressure before and after exposure to cold stimulus.
  • Observe an example of sympathetic nervous system activation (“fight or flight” response).

Sensors and Equipment

This experiment features the following Vernier sensors and equipment.

Additional Requirements

You may also need an interface and software for data collection. What do I need for data collection?

Standards Correlations

See all standards correlations for Human Physiology with Vernier »

Experiment 7 from Human Physiology with Vernier Lab Book

<i>Human Physiology with Vernier</i> book cover

Included in the Lab Book

Vernier lab books include word-processing files of the student instructions, essential teacher information, suggested answers, sample data and graphs, and more.

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