Reflection on Taking Blood Pressure

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The aim of this essay is to reflect and discuss my knowledge acquired in a simulated learning skill experience which forms part of my training as a student nurse in accordance with the Nurses and Midwifery Council (NMC 2010).

(Marieb and Hoehn, 2010, p 703) defined Blood Pressure (BP) as ‘the force per unit area exerted on a vessel wall by the contained blood, and is expressed in millimetres of mercury (mm Hg)’. BP is still one of the essential and widely used assessment tools in healthcare settings. Nurses generally record the arterial BP which is the forced exerted blood that flows through the arteries, to establish a baseline and to determine any risk factors. BP composes of two measurements, the systolic and diastolic pressure. The systolic pressure is when the ventricle contracts and the blood is at the peak normally an average adult is around 120mmHg (Marieb & Hoehn 2010). The diastolic pressure is lower within the arteries and always present when the ventricles are at rest and the aortic valve is close. This essay will discuss the measuring and recording of BP of a colleague in a skills laboratory.

During the skills practice, a colleagues BP was measured in the skills laboratory. There are two methods for recording BP direct and indirect with this session it was the indirect technique. The manual auscultatory method measured in the arm on the brachial artery (Richards, and Edwards, 2008). I introduced myself as a student nurse and then explained the procedure involved systematically to relieve any anxieties. The patient needs to understand the process in order to consent (NMC 2010). Ensuring a relaxed and calm environment is essential, emotional and temperature variation and can affect the readings. Hand washing is essential to reduce and prevent the spread of infections especially cross-infection ((Dougherty and Lister 2011).

I washed and dried my hands appropriately, after...
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