Chapter 3: Pulse and Respiration

Chapter Summary

Measurement of pulse and respiration is important because these vital signs provide current data about the client’s health and illness state. Changes in pulse and respiration act as cues for healthcare providers’ diagnostic reasoning.

Pulse can be measured in many locations. When determining the best location, healthcare providers consider the client’s age and health and illness state, as well as the reason for taking the pulse.

When determining the relevance of pulse and respiration data, healthcare providers consider the client’s baseline data and the situation. Diagnostic reasoning about pulse and respiration always considers additional information, including other vital sign measurements and subjective and objective client data.