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May 1964

Flush Blood Pressure and Intra-Arterial Pressure: A Comparison of Methods in Infants

Author Affiliations

Arthur J. Moss, MD, University of California, Los Angeles Medical School, Department of Pediatrics, Los Angeles, Calif; From the Department of Pediatrics, School of Medicine, University of California at Los Angeles.

Am J Dis Child. 1964;107(5):489-491. doi:10.1001/archpedi.1964.02080060491009

A difference of opinion continues to exist concerning the proper interpretation of blood pressure estimation by the flush method. Whereas some believe the earliest discernible flush represents the systolic level of arterial pressure,1-4 others maintain that it more closely approximates the mean pressure.5-7 In normal newborn infants the difference between mean and systolic pressure is not great but in older infants or those with hypertension the difference may be considerable and incorrect interpretation could conceivably lead to serious clinical misjudgment. The present investigation involving observations of simultaneously recorded direct and flush pressures was aimed primarily at resolving this problem.

Material and Methods  Observations were made on 88 children ranging in age from 1 day to 4 years. Twenty-five infants were newly born and all had normal cardiovascular systems. The older children had some type of congenital heart defect and were studied at the time of cardiac catheterization. A