A patient is admitted to the hospital for chest pain. The nurse administers a nitroglycerin tablet. What change in vitals signs can the nurse expect?

Decreased blood pressure
Increased heart rate

Explanation

• Nitroglycerin is a vasodilator, leading to a reduction in blood pressure. 

• At lower doses, nitroglycerin dilates veins more than arteries. This results in a decrease of preload, which decreases cardiac output. 

• The sympathetic nervous system kicks in, increasing heart rate so that cardiac output can be maintained. 

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