Vital Signs Terminology

  1. Afebrile
    Without fever
  2. Apical Pulse
    heart beat as listened to with the bell or diaphragm of a stethoscope placed on the apex of the heart
  3. Blood Pressure
    the pressure of the blood in the circulatory system, often measured for diagnosis since it is closely related to the force and rate of the heartbeat and the diameter and elasticity of the arterial walls
  4. Bradycardia
    slower than normal heart rate; heart contracts fewer than 60 times per minute
  5. Bradypnea
    abnormally slow rate of breathing
  6. Cardiac Output
    (CO); volume of blood expelled by the ventricles of the heart, equal to the amount of blood ejected at each beat multiplied by the number of beats in the period of time used for computation (usually 1 minute)
  7. Celcius
    a scale of temperature based on 0°C for the freezing point of water and 100°C for the boiling point of water
  8. Diaphoresis
    secretion of sweat, especially profuse secretion associated with an elevated body temperature, physical exertion or emotional stress
  9. Diastolic Blood Pressure
    (Diastole); the blood pressure at the instant of maximum cardiac relaxation (chambers fill with blood)
  10. Systolic Blood Pressure
    (Systole); ventricular contraction
  11. Dyspnea
    sensation of shortness of breath
  12. Fahrenheit
    measure of temperature based on 32°F freezing point of water and 212°F boiling point of water at sea level
  13. Febrile
    pertaining to or characterized by an elevated body temperature (fever)
  14. FUO
    Fever of Unknown Origin

    Despite investigation by a physician
  15. Hypertension
    disorder characterized by an elevated blood pressure persistently exceeding 120/80 mm Hg
  16. Hypotension
    abnormal lowering of blood pressure that is inadequate for normal perfusion and oxygenation of tissues
  17. Hypothermia
    abnormal lowering of body temperature below 35°C or 95°F, usually caused by prolonged exposure to cold
  18. Hyperventilation
    Respiratory rate in excess of that required to maintain normal carbon dioxide levels in the body tissues
  19. Hypoventilation
    respiratory rate insufficient to prevent carbon dioxide retention
  20. JVD
    Jugular Venous Distention

    sign of increased central venous pressure (CVP) inside the vena cava

    • Symptom of:
    • Right-sided heart failure
    • Pulmonary hypertension
    • Tricuspid valve stenosis
    • Superior vena cava obstruction
    • Constrictive pericarditis
  21. Orthostatic Hypotension
    abnormally low blood pressure occurring when a person stands
  22. Oxygen Saturation
    amount of hemoglobin fully saturated with oxygen, given as a percent value
  23. Tachycardia
    rapid regular heart rate ranging between 100 and 150 beats per minute
  24. Tachypnea
    abnormally rapid rate of breathing
Card Set
Vital Signs Terminology
Cardiac assessment and vital signs