vital signs

plural noun

Definition of vital signs

1 : signs of life … frightened even more by the fact that a few months ago you were clinically dead—that's right, dead—all vital signs gone.— Asa Baber specifically : the pulse rate, respiratory rate, body temperature, and blood pressure of a person Her vital signs and findings from physical examination were normal, and she was not hospitalized. — John P. Hanrahan et al.
2 : measurable variables considered to indicate the general state or condition of something The economy's vital signs are stronger than they have been in years. Companies are posting jobs faster than they can find workers to fill them.— Ben Casselman He proposes that living things act as a single, coordinated entity that maintains the earth's temperature and other vital signs within very narrow limits that are to the entity's own benefit.— Michael Oppenheimer The singular vital sign is sometimes used for a single sign or measurement. The box … houses nine removable electronic modules, each of which monitors a specific vital sign, such as temperature, oil pressure, and the rpm of the power turbine and gas producer.— Jay Coyle The singular form is also often used before another noun. vital sign monitors vital sign data

Examples of vital signs in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web During his entire bout, researchers tracked — hour by hour — the rise and fall of his vital signs, his viral loads, his altered cognitive state and his immune system’s strenuous effort to clear the virus. Melissa Healy, Los Angeles Times, 30 June 2022 The medical team went straight to code blue, pumping air into the baby’s lungs, trying to force an IV line into Emberly’s neck and scalp, prodding her with a rectal thermometer — but her vital signs kept failing. New York Times, 20 June 2022 Additionally, doctors wouldn’t have to rush patients into an operating room, giving them time to make sure their vital signs are stable or any infection in their body is dealt with. Pranshu Verma, Washington Post, 3 June 2022 The nursing care resident has been sent to the hospital for treatment and their vital signs are stabilizing, local media reported. Time, 2 May 2022 His vital signs indicated an elevated heart rate and dry lips — signs of dehydration. Audrey Conklin, Fox News, 21 Apr. 2022 Initially singing from chairs that simulated hospital beds that showed vital signs, and dressed all in white (a theme of the evening), the trio got up halfway, with screams from the audience sometimes overpowering the singing. Billboard Staff, Billboard, 21 Apr. 2022 The interior's big reach is the idea of the car as mood ring: the designers propose using biometrics to monitor your feelings and vital signs. Rich Ceppos, Car and Driver, 1 June 2022 The process creates a device that could wrap around an arm and be used to track an athlete’s motion, speed or vital signs, for instance, says Carmel Majidi, a mechanical engineer at Carnegie Mellon University. Kurt Kleiner, Smithsonian Magazine, 6 May 2022 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'vital signs.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

First Known Use of vital signs

1801, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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The first known use of vital signs was in 1801

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Dictionary Entries Near vital signs


vital signs

vital space

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Last Updated

15 Aug 2022

Cite this Entry

“Vital signs.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 17 Aug. 2022.

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More Definitions for vital signs

vital signs

noun plural

Medical Definition of vital signs

: signs of life specifically : the pulse rate, respiratory rate, body temperature, and often blood pressure of a person


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