Difference Between Heart Rate and Pulse Rate

Heart Rate vs Pulse Rate

Heart rate and Pulse rate are often misunderstood as one and the same thing. Actually there are some differences between the two. It is true that your pulse rate starts with your heart beat. A heart beat causes a pulse in your arteries.

A pulse is akin to the ripples produced in a calm lake by throwing a piece of stone. On the other hand heart beat is the number of times your heart beats in one minute. This is the main difference between heart rate and pulse rate.

It is understood from the explanation made above that source of a pulse is the heart. The contraction of the heart results in a heart beat. This beat forces blood to pass through the arteries. The forcing of the blood to pass through the arteries results in the formation of pulse.

It is interesting to note that the heart beats for about 60 to 80 times in a minute in an average adult. Older people may have it between 60 and 100. It is important to know that heart rate is higher in women than in men. It is believed that heart rate is affected by some factors such as bodily exercise, stress, illness and injury.

A pulse is the expansion and contraction of an artery. It is understood that the expansion and contraction is caused by the sudden flow of blood due to the heart beat. It is important to know that the blood flows from the left side of the heart. Pulse is easily felt at the wrist or at the neck of the older adults. In children pulse is easily felt at the upper arm.

As a matter of fact pulse rate and heart rate are one and the same. There can be a difference between the two rates in case blood finds it difficult to get into or pass into the arteries. In such cases the two rates differ from each other and hence medical attention should be sought immediately.

If there is an increase in the heart rate especially after a strenuous bout of exercise in the case of an adult of 40 years of age, then there is nothing to worry. On the other hand if an old man has an increased heart rate even without performing any strenuous exercise then he should immediately take the help of his personal doctor.