Pulse deficit

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A deficit in pulse when there is a difference in the apical pulse and the peripheral pulse determined by the simultaneous auscultation at the heart apex and palpation at the radial artery (respectively).


Normally, the heart rate and pulse rate are the same but for patients who are in atrial fibrillation, there is a pulse deficit wherein the pulse rate is lower than the heart rate.

Word origin: pulse » Latin, pulsus, a beat; deficit » Latin, déficit, (it) lacks.

See also: pulse.