Figure 12

Hemodynamic determinants of arterial pressure. During the diastolic phase of the cardiac cycle, the elastic recoil characteristics of the arterial tree provide the kinetic energy that allows a continuous delivery of blood flow to the tissues. Blood flow is dependent on the arterial pressure gradient and total peripheral resistance. Under normal conditions the right atrial pressure is near zero, and thus the arterial pressure is the pressure gradient. These relationships apply for any instant in time and to time-integrated averages when the mean pressure is used. The time-integrated average blood flow is the cardiac output that is normally 5 to 6 L/min for an adult of average weight (70 to 75 kg).

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