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paradoxical pulse

n.
  1. An exaggeration of the normal variation in the pulse during respiration, in which the pulse becomes weaker as one inhales and stronger as one exhales; it is characteristic of constrictive pericarditis or pericardial effusion.
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The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.