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What is the effect of different body positions i.e. lying down, sitting and standing on the blood pressure?

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Introduction

Research Question: What is the effect of different body positions i.e. lying down, sitting and standing on the blood pressure? Hypothesis: Blood pressure is a measure of "the pressure of the blood in the arteries as the heart pumps it around the body" (Better Health Channel, 2007). When blood pressure is measured, it is usually expressed as two values, the systolic value and diastolic value. The systolic pressure is the higher value and represents "the maximum pressure exerted when the heat contracts", where the lower number, the diastolic value, "represents the pressure in the arteries when the heart is at rest" (MedlinePlus Medical Encyclopaedia, 2007). There are numerous factors which influence the blood pressure of a person, including age, fitness, psychological factors such as stress, diet, and body position. This investigation will focus on body position and will investigate the effect of different body positions, i.e. lying down, sitting and standing on blood pressure. When a person is standing, blood falls to their legs due to gravity, resulting in a decrease in blood pressure1. This is supported by the literature stating that "when you stand up, gravity causes blood to naturally want to pool in your leg veins causing a drop in blood pressure"2. However, when you are standing up for longer periods of time, your body responds by increasing blood pressure; "the autonomic nervous system tries to correct this by narrowing your blood vessels, increase[ing] blood pressure" (OneTwentyOverEighty, 2007). When a person is in a lying down position, as the body is in a horizontal position, it is easier to pump blood around the body, this is supported by the literature "blood pressure [decreases] when lying down since the body is not having to work too hard to pump blood around the body" (OneTwentyOverEighty, 2007). However, when a person is sitting down, the body has to work slightly harder to pump blood around the body compared to when the body is in a horizontal position and this will slightly increase the blood pressure. ...read more.

Middle

of participants standing up, sitting down and lying down Table 9: Descriptive statistics for average systolic and diastolic pressure for participants in a standing position Systolic (mmHg) Diastolic (mmHg) Mean 118 73.2 ?x 1189 732 ?x2 143954 55640 Sx 22.886 15.12 ?x 21.7117 14.34433 n 10 10 Table 10: t-Test: paired two sample for mean systolic pressures between standing up and sitting down position Standing up and Sitting Down T-Value 1.8125 Critical Value of t 2.26 Degrees of Freedom 18 Significant No as T-Value ? Critical Value Standing up and sitting down: Null Hypothesis (H0): There is no difference in systolic pressures for participants in a standing up and sitting down position. As the observable value of t (1.8125) is less than the critical value of t (2.26), we do not reject H0 and by conventional criteria, the difference between the means of the systolic pressures for participants sitting down and standing up is considered to be insignificant. ?There is no significant difference between systolic pressure for participants in a standing and sitting position Table 11: t-Test: paired two sample for mean systolic pressures between sitting down and lying down position Sitting Down and Lying Down T-Value 0.6925 Critical Value of t 2.26 Degrees of Freedom 18 Significant No as T-Value ? Critical Value Sitting down and lying down: Null Hypothesis (H0): There is no difference in systolic pressures for participants in a sitting down and lying down position. As the observable value of t (0.6925) is less than the critical value of t (2.26), we do not reject H0 and by conventional criteria, the difference between the means of the systolic pressures for participants sitting down and lying down is considered to be insignificant ?There is no significant difference between systolic pressure for participants in a lying and sitting position Table 12: Descriptive statistics for average systolic and diastolic pressure for participants in a sitting position Systolic (mmHg) ...read more.

Conclusion

experiment; some participants for example sat cross-legged which would have increased the blood pressure of the participants and made the data collected inaccurate The leg position of the participants should have been controlled; researchers should have demonstrated the leg position for the participants in order to reduce errors in the blood pressure. The method of only leaving the participants in each of the different body positions for 2 minutes before measuring the blood pressure may have influenced the data This may have influenced the data as it may not have allowed enough time for the blood pressure to change significantly for each position and the blood pressure difference for each of the positions may not have been considered significant because of this, reducing the accuracy of the results The participants should have remained in the different body positions for a longer period of time, 5 minutes or more, before measuring the blood pressure, in order to increase the reliability of the results and allow for the blood pressure to change properly The experiment was not repeated for each participant in order to confirm validity of results. Since the experiment was only conducted once for each participant, the errors which occurred throughout this experiment may have affected the data collected and the conclusions which were drawn. The experiment should have been repeated several times, and an average found for each of the sets of data collected for each participant in order to ensure reliability and reduce the impact of the errors on the data collected. List of Reference Better Health Channel (2007). Hypertension- high blood pressure. (WWW) http://www.betterhealth.vic.gov.au/bhcv2/bhcarticles.nsf/pages/Hypertension_means_high_blood_pressure (accessed 30/04/08) MedlinePlus Medical Encyclopaedia (2007). Blood Pressure. (WWW) http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/ency/article/003398.htm (accessed 30/04/08) OneTwentyOverEighty (2007). Effect of lying down, sitting, and standing on blood pressure. (WWW) http://www.OneTwentyOverEighty.com/experiments/blood-pressure-lying-sitting-standing.htm (accessed 30/04/08) 1 OneTwentyOverEighty (2007). Effect of lying down, sitting, and standing on blood pressure. (WWW) http://www.OneTwentyOverEighty.com/experiments/blood-pressure-lying-sitting-standing.htm (accessed 5/05/08) 2 OneTwentyOverEighty (2007). Effect of lying down, sitting, and standing on blood pressure. (WWW) http://www.OneTwentyOverEighty.com/experiments/blood-pressure-lying-sitting-standing.htm (accessed 5/05/08) ?? ?? ?? ?? 1 ...read more.

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