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Article
November 28, 1914

THE PALPATION OF ARTERIES

JAMA. 1914;LXIII(22):1956-1957. doi:10.1001/jama.1914.02570220066025
Abstract

By palpation, writes Osler in connection with the diagnosis of arteriosclerosis, we are enabled to judge with fair accuracy the degree of thickening of the vessel wall. It requires not only experience, but also education, to form a correct judgment on the state of the arteries. A perfectly normal vessel, when contracted, may feel hard and cord-like. On the other hand, in a radial definitely thickened, but in a state of extreme relaxation, the hardening of the walls may escape detection. The state of the tissues about the artery, the amount of fat in the skin, the size and fulness of the veins—all have to be considered. One of the commonest of mistakes is to regard as thickened any vessel one can roll under the finger. But in a state of very high tension and if very full, the arterial tube may feel cord-like. To estimate the presence of sclerosis

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