Brachial Pulse Palpation

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About this medical skill
Parent skills Pulse Points and Palpation
Vital Signs Assessment
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Brachial Pulse When palpating the brachial pulse, you are feeling for the brachial artery that comes close to the surface just above the antecubital fossa (inside of the elbow) to the medial side of the biceps muscle insertion point (this is the same point over which you are auscultating when taking an auscultated blood pressure). To obtain the brachial pulse:

  1. Place the tips of two or three fingers on the bicep tendon in the area of the antecubital fossa.
  2. Move the pads of your three fingers medial (about 2 cm) from the tendon and about 2–3 cm above the antecubital fossa to locate the pulse.
  3. The brachial artery can be fairly deep in the muscle, so pushing the muscle to the side with the finger tips and pressing more firmly than you do for other pulses may aid you in finding it. Once you have found it, lighten the pressure.

Taking pulses in infants can be challenging, but the brachial pulse is one of the most consistently findable pulse points for first responders.