I started my CNA class mid-May and we're just now starting to learn how to take BPs.
What I've been having the most trouble with is finding the brachial pulse. If I'm lucky I can find it (it's usually very faint), but most of the time I can't feel anything. I'm using two fingers and I've tried varying levels of pressure--thinking that I was pressing too hard, or not hard enough---but I can't find any reason why I can't consistently find it.
Any tips? Anyone willing to tell me, step-by-step what they (personally) do to find the brachial pulse? My textbook (Mosby's) and teacher haven't been much help.
Carolyn (ginger58) was kind enough to send me this PM and I thought I would share it because it clarifies everything nicely:
Quote from ginger58
To be sure you understand medial, you need to know that anatomic position is with the palms forward and medial is toward the center. So you're looking for this devious pulse on the side of the 5th finger.
Take your right index and third fingers and at or slightly below the crease at your left elbow roll your fingers over the bone and it should be there. Try pressing with less pressure. It also helps to roll the fingers over the bone and then flatten them out instead of trying with the finger tips.
Hope this helps. It's tricky. Carolyn
Last edit by zooz on Jun 21, '07