Basic Aspects

  • Nicolaas Westerhof
  • Nikolaos Stergiopulos
  • Mark I. M. Noble


Pressure is the force applied per unit area. In hemodynamics we always think of pressure in terms of a pressure difference. The pressure difference along the axis, or pressure gradient, is the pressure that causes the flow of blood. The pressure difference between the inside and outside of a vessel or the heart, which is often called transmural pressure, causes the wall distension.


Pressure Difference Wave Speed Circulation Time Total Peripheral Resistance Oscillatory Pressure 
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  1. 1.
    Munson BR, Young DF, Okiishi TH. Fundamentals of fluid mechanics. 1994, New York, Wiley.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer US 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  • Nicolaas Westerhof
    • 1
  • Nikolaos Stergiopulos
    • 2
  • Mark I. M. Noble
    • 3
  1. 1.Departments of Physiology and Pulmonology ICaR-VUVU University Medical CenterAmsterdamthe Netherlands
  2. 2.Laboratory of Hemodynamics and Cardiovascular TechnologySwiss Federal Institute of TechnologyLausanneSwitzerland
  3. 3.Cardiovascular MedicineAberdeen UniversityAberdeenScotland

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