Just looking for some tips in regards to assessing the pedal pulse. I have a very difficult time finding it on pts. I normally have to use the doppler, but the nurse seems to get it everytime with out. Any suggestions?
According to Textbook of Physical Diagnosis: History and Examination
, 3rd edition, by Mark H. Swartz, M.D., page 329 "The dorsalis pedis pulse is best felt by dorsiflexion of the foot. The dorsalis pedis artery passes along a line from the extensor retinaculum of the ankle to a point just lateral to the extensor tendon of the great toe."
- if you scroll down this page to the section near the end entitled The Distal Pulses
you will find a discussion and photos (one anatomical from a cadaver) on how to locate and palpate the Dorsalis Pedis Pulse in the foot.
Some additional information for you, in the event that the subject of the "grading", or amplitude, of pulses should come up. Here is the most popular grading scale that is used (page 330 of the Swartz textbook):
0 - absent
1 - diminished
2 - normal
3 - increased
4 - bounding
Last edit by Daytonite on Sep 29, '07