Sphygmography

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Sphygmography

 

an external method of studying the blood circulation in man and animals based on the graphic registration of the pulse—the oscillations in the arterial walls as the pulse wave passes through the arteries. Pulse curves (sphygmograms) are recorded by sensors attached over the carotid artery; the sphygmogram of the central pulse reflects mainly the process by which blood is pumped from the left ventricle of the heart into the aorta. Sensors attached over the superficial arteries of the extremities produce a sphygmogram of the peripheral pulse that measures the circulation of the pulse wave in the arteries. Synchronic recording of these curves makes it possible to measure the lag between the peripheral pulse and the central pulse and to determine the circulation rate of the pulse wave. A sphygmogram of the central pulse, an electrocardiogram, and a phonocardiogram—jointly called the polycardiogram—are recorded simultaneously to study heart contractions by the method of phase analysis. Sphygmography is used to diagnose certain heart diseases and vascular diseases.

I. M. KAEVITSER