In the thread about telling when someone is dead, there is a discussion of (human blood vessel) pulses which reminded me of a question I’ve been meaning to ask.
My pulse is clearly visible in each of my wrists. You don’t have to put your finger on and feel to count it, you can just look, and there it is, pulsing away. I know that this is unusual, because every time I show it to someone, they freak out. But how unusual is it? And what causes it? Are my arteries just unusually close to the surface? I have normal-sized wrists.
Are you particularly thin? My completely uneducated suspicion is that maybe you have a bit less fat under the skin of your wrist, and thus the pulse isn’t “cushioned” as well by the time it hits the surface.
I dunno about the OP but I and many people I know are unusually thin and none of us can see our pulse. The pulsy artery sits under a “tent” created by your wrist tendons. Maybe she has more fat than usual underneath her artery or something.
I’m overweight rather than underweight, but none of the extra weight seems to be in my wrists (they measure about 6 1/2" around, which is pretty standard). I was hoping that a bunch of people would jump in to say that they could also see their pulse, but I guess this is one time when I am the only one.
I can see the pulse in my right wrist; it’s not terribly obvious but it’s there. It’s probably just one of those anatomical quirks; if you have an artery or arteriole running close to the skin you can see the pulse, if you don’t, you can’t. Unless you make a habit of sticking your hand in barrels of knives or some such, there’s probably no hazard in it.
I can see it in both wrists in very oblique light. That makes the gently moving skin cast longer shadows. Since it depends so much on the angle of the light for me, I’ll trust the hands-on method if there is doubt.
I, too, have visible pulse. Actually, when I was little, both of my wrists have visible pulses, but when I got a little older (teenager), the only visible one which is left was the right wrist. Yes, same goes for me, I got the immediate reaction of other people who see it. Either they are amazed or they freak out. Actually, I have this one friend who is afraid of touching it, even the slightest touch, whenever I hand something to her, and she accidentally bump it. She’s afraid that the skin of my right wrist might tear off (she’s just over reacting). She thinks that it’s too dainty- which is somehow true, but with a little bit exaggeration. It’s nothing to worry about, but just make sure don’t accidentally prick it with a pen or a knife. hahaha. just kidding
I can see my pulse in my left, but not my right, wrist. I can also see every vein in both hands and forearms. Many of them actually stand out over the skin. I have had a lot of blood taken throughout my life and they still go for the inner elbow. Um Nurse, there are veins literally (and I mean literally) poking out of my skin, and you choose the inner elbow?
In most people - perhaps not you - veins that poke out make bad IV or blood draw sites. They lack connective tissue pinning them down, so they roll, or they’re varicose and I can’t get a needle in there without it blowing out the stretched vessel wall. They also tend to be twisty, or have extra valves, so the catheter will advance, but not far enough, and we’ve got to start over.
When I learned to place an IV, the first thing my teacher (my husband, a retired paramedic instructor) did was put a blindfold on me. You can’t see a good vein, you have to feel it. Getting distracted by a good *looking *vein is a rookie mistake.