Normal Blood Pressure, High Pulse Rate

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Normal Blood Pressure, High Pulse Rate
Your pulse rate and blood pressure aren't correlated. ("Broken Heart" is Copyrighted by Flickr user: CarbonNYC (David Goehring) under the Creative Commons Attribution license.)

If you've just worked out and your pulse rate is high, you might think your blood pressure is high as well. Actually, blood pressure and pulse rate aren't closely related. It's possible to have a high pulse rate while your blood pressure is normal.

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Normal Blood Pressure, High Pulse Rate
Your pulse rate and blood pressure aren't correlated. ("Broken Heart" is Copyrighted by Flickr user: CarbonNYC (David Goehring) under the Creative Commons Attribution license.)

Function

Blood pressure and pulse rate are both measures of heart function, but they measure different things. Blood pressure is the force of the blood as it moves through the arteries, and pulse rate is the number of times your heart beats each minute.

Misconceptions

When your pulse rate rises, your blood pressure doesn't rise with it. Even though your heart is beating faster due to activity, stress or a health issue, the force of the pumping blood isn't affected.

Measurement

If your pulse rate has seemed consistently high, start to monitor it. After a full night's rest, check your resting heart rate by counting your pulse for a minute. An average resting heart rate is 60 to 80 beats per minute.

Considerations

After activity, your pulse rate should be raised, though your blood pressure should remain normal. Your target heart rate for activity is 50 to 85 per cent of your maximum heart rate.

Warning

If your heart rate is rapid even when you're at rest, you may have a condition called tachycardia. In addition to the rapid pulse rate, you may notice dizziness, shortness of breath or lightheadedness. See your doctor for diagnosis and treatment options.

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