The same way we have a standard anatomical position, we also have a reference person (or standard person) that has perfectly “normal” characteristics.
When you hear things such as a normal heart rate (70bpm) or normal blood pressure range (120 over 80), they are considered “normal” for the theoretical reference person which is…
- A young man (20−30 years old)
- weighing 70kg (154lbs)
- with a height of 170cm (5’7″)
- who lives in a climate with an average temperature from 10°C to 20°C (50°F to 68°F)
Over the counter drug dosage recommendations, such as Tylenol, are based on this reference person.
Do you think the normal heart rate for a new born baby is 70bpm? It’s more like 120bpm. What about the blood pressure for a pregnant woman? The values will be different for every trimester. In recent years, reference woman and reference child models have been created but are not common knowledge.
Basic Physiology Primers
- The Concept of a Reference Person
- Review of Cell Membrane Structure
- The Proteins Embedded in Cell Membranes
- Fluid Compartments within the Human Body
- Movement of substances across cell membranes
- The Principle of Homeostasis
- Regulation of Body Temperature
- Inflammation and the Pathophysiology of Fever
- The Menstrual Cycle