You are seeing an older patient who has not had medical care for many years. Her vital signs taken by your office staff are: T 37.2, HR 78, BP 118/92, and RR 14, and she denies pain. You notice that she has some hypertensive changes in her retinas and you find mild proteinuria on a urine test in your office. You expected the BP to be higher. She is not on any medications. What do you think is causing this BP reading, which doesn't correlate with the other findings?
It is caused by an "auscultatory gap."