Introduction to Blood Pressure
Blood pressure is the force of an individual’s blood pushing on the walls of the arteries. Blood pressure is one of the factors determining the flow of blood through the body.
How is blood pressure measured?
Blood pressure is measured using a sphygmomanometer, informally known as a blood pressure cuff. Specifically, a blood pressure measurement gives two readings:
- Systolic pressure: the pressure of the blood while the heart is pumping blood to the body
- Diastolic pressure: the pressure of the blood while the heart is filling between beats
Explore the with the interactive image below to see how arteries change with systolic and diastolic pressure: