(2) In a normal adult female, the systolic pressure should be between 90
and 130 mm Hg, inclusive.
b. Diastolic. The arteries are under the least pressure from the blood when the
heart is at rest (between pumps or beats) and the arteries have returned to their normal
(1) In a normal adult male, the diastolic pressure should be between 60 and
90 mm Hg, inclusive.
(2) In a normal adult female, the diastolic pressure should be between 50
and 80 mm Hg, inclusive.
WHAT FACTS AFFECT A PERSON'S BLOOD PRESSURE?
There are several factors that can affect a patient's blood pressure. Some are
only temporary; others are long-term effects. A condition in which the blood pressure is
considerably above normal is called "hypertension." If the blood pressure is too low, it
is called "hypotension."
a. Condition of Cardiovascular System. A primary factor influencing a
patient's blood pressure is the condition of his cardiovascular system (heart and blood
(1) If a patient's heart is not pumping blood with enough force, his blood
pressure will be low. This will decrease the rate that blood is circulated throughout the
body. Slow blood circulation may result in certain parts of the body (especially the
brain) not receiving enough oxygen since oxygen is carried by the blood.
(2) If a patient's heart is pumping with too much force, his blood pressure
will be high. If an artery has a weak spot, the force of the systolic pressure may be
enough to rupture the artery and allow blood to escape.
(3) If a patient's arteries loose part of their elasticity, such as in patients who
have arteriosclerosis (hardening of the arteries), the patient's blood pressure will be
higher, since the artery walls stretch less and cannot relieve as much pressure.
b. Age. A person's blood pressure readings tend to increase as he grows older.
c. Gender. As indicated in paragraph 5-2, men tend to have higher blood
pressure than women of the same age.
d. Physical Fitness. People who are physically fit tend to have more normal
blood pressure than people who are "out of shape."