Case 3 – Volume Status

Please assess the volume status of Mr. Kennedy, a 61 year old male, and comment on your findings.

Physical Examination


  • Assesses heart rate by palpating the radial pulse
  • Measures blood pressure while supine
  • Assesses orthostatic changes by measuring blood pressure and heart rate with patient standing
  • Comments on vital signs findings of a patient who is hypovolemic


  • Observes JVP with correct patient position (30 degrees head-up-tilt); adjusts patient accordingly if JVP is not initially evident
  • Confirms JVP by changing angle of head of bed
  • Occludes JVP to confirm location
  • Comments on the multiple waveforms of the JVP
  • Comments on the JVP height

Peripheral Vasculature

  • Comments on capillary refill
  • Comments on skin turgor, mottling
  • Comments on mucus membranes
  • Examines for peripheral edema
  • Comments on peripheral temperature
Case 3 – Volume Status