list 6 sequences
assignment Level : Introductive
chat_bubble_outline Language : English
language Subtitles : Arabic, Catalan, Dutch, Russian
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Key information

credit_card Free access
verified_user Fee-based Certificate
timer 18 hours in total

About the content

The vital signs – heart rate, blood pressure, body temperature, respiration rate, and pain – communicate important information about the physiological status of the human body. In this six-part course we explore the anatomy and physiology underlying the vital signs so that you will develop a systematic, integrated understanding of how the body functions. Relevant body systems are reviewed including cardiovascular and respiratory, followed by explanations of how the function of these systems affects vital signs. We discuss normal ranges, normal variants, and the mechanisms that underlie changes in the objective measurement of vital signs. The course also includes demonstrations of appropriate techniques for measuring vital signs in yourself and others. The course is designed for a broad, general audience but will be particularly interesting for individuals working in healthcare, those considering a career as a healthcare professional, lay caregivers, those with an interest in personal health and fitness, or anyone who simply wants to understand how the body functions.

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Syllabus

  • Week 1 - Week 1: Pulse/Heart Rate
    This week we start our exploration of the vital signs with a look at the heart. We'll study the basic structure of the heart, think about how the heart pumps blood through the body, and learn how clinicians assess and think about heart rate and the pulse.
  • Week 2 - Week 2: Blood Pressure
    During week 2 we will learn about the anatomy of the blood vessels and how they function. You will have a better understanding of systolic and diastolic blood pressure, mean arterial pressure, and assessing blood pressure accurately.
  • Week 3 - Week 3: Metabolism
    This week we will explore metabolism. We will discuss anabolism and catabolism, basal metabolic rate, how the body generates heat. You will also have a better understanding of how health care providers assess metabolic rate.
  • Week 4 - Week 4: Temperature
    During week 4 you will learn the definition of mean body temperature and how the body regulates temperature. We will discuss hypothermia and the difference between hyperthermia and fever. Lastly, you will learn how to assess body temperature.
  • Week 5 - Week 5: Respiration Rate
    This week we will learn about pulmonary anatomy, capillary gas exchange, and regulation of respiration. You will have a better understanding of how health care providers assess respiration rate and the quality of lung sounds.
  • Week 6 - Week 6: Pain
    This week we will explore the neurological pathways associated with pain, and the difference between pain tolerance and pain threshold. We will understand what pain is telling us and why accurately assessing and effectively managing pain are important. In addi...
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Instructors

Connie B. Scanga, PhD
Practice Professor
School of Nursing

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Content designer

University of Pennsylvania
The University of Pennsylvania (commonly referred to as Penn) is a private university, located in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, United States. A member of the Ivy League, Penn is the fourth-oldest institution of higher education in the United States, and considers itself to be the first university in the United States with both undergraduate and graduate studies.
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Platform

Coursera

Coursera is a digital company offering massive open online course founded by computer teachers Andrew Ng and Daphne Koller Stanford University, located in Mountain View, California. 

Coursera works with top universities and organizations to make some of their courses available online, and offers courses in many subjects, including: physics, engineering, humanities, medicine, biology, social sciences, mathematics, business, computer science, digital marketing, data science, and other subjects.

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