Dr. Chauncey W. Crandall, author of Dr. Crandall’s Heart Health Report newsletter, is chief of the Cardiac Transplant Program at the world-renowned Palm Beach Cardiovascular Clinic in Palm Beach Gardens, Fla. He practices interventional, vascular, and transplant cardiology. Dr. Crandall received his post-graduate training at Yale University School of Medicine, where he also completed three years of research in the Cardiovascular Surgery Division. Dr. Crandall regularly lectures nationally and internationally on preventive cardiology, cardiology healthcare of the elderly, healing, interventional cardiology, and heart transplants. Known as the “Christian physician,” Dr. Crandall has been heralded for his values and message of hope to all his heart patients.

Tags: pulse rate | resting heart rate | heartbeats per minute | cardiac health | heart disease risk | Dr. Chauncey Crandall

What's Your Pulse Rate?

Wednesday, 11 Apr 2012 10:27 AM

Your pulse rate, measured by the number of times your heart beats per minute, is a measure of your cardiac health.

You can check your pulse rate at the radial artery at your wrist, or at the carotid artery in your neck. When you feel your pulse, count either for the whole 60 seconds, or do it for 30 seconds and multiply by two.

If you’re an adult, a healthy resting heart rate should fall somewhere between 60 and 80 beats per minute.

If your resting heart rate is going up, that may be a sign that you have heart disease. A recent study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association tracked nearly 13,500 men and 16,000 women whose average age was 52 for 10 years. Compared with those whose resting heart rates stayed at 70, those who had heart rates that climbed to 85 had a 90 percent higher risk of death from heart disease.

In those whose heart rates started at between 70 and 85 beats per minute, an increase to more than 85 beats per minute at the follow-up reading signaled an 80 percent increase in the risk of death from heart disease.

Factors that can influence heart rate include gender (a woman’s heart rate is slightly higher), genetics, age, activity level, diet, obesity, smoking, and stress.

However, pulse rate varies from person to person. You should know what your baseline resting heart rate is and keep track; if it’s gradually climbing upwards, see your doctor.

Generally, the fitter you are, the lower your pulse rate will be, and the way to get fit is to exercise regularly. (A well-trained athlete may have a pulse rate of 50 or even lower.) Taking a one-hour daily walk will condition you, resulting in a lower resting heart rate.

© HealthDay

   
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Knowing your pulse rate — the number of times your heart beats per minute — can help pinpoint your risk of heart disease.
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Wednesday, 11 Apr 2012 10:27 AM
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