Systolic pressure is the pressure of blood against the artery walls
when the heart has just finished contracting or pumping out blood. (Diastolic
pressure is the pressure of blood against the artery walls between heartbeats,
when the heart is relaxed and filling with blood.)
Systolic blood pressure is the upper number of a blood pressure
reading. For example, if a person's systolic pressure is 120 millimeters of
mercury (mm Hg) and the diastolic pressure is 80 mm Hg, blood pressure is
recorded as 120/80 and read as "120 over 80."
E. Gregory Thompson, MD - Internal Medicine & Robert A. Kloner, MD, PhD - Cardiology
How this information was developed to help you make better health decisions.