Tuesday, 25 January 2011

Why does my heart, feel so bad?

Actually it doesn't. But I thought of that title for this post and couldn't come up with a better one.

Clinical skills this week was ECGs, which I have done hundreds of times as a nurse, not really understanding what I'm looking for, sticking the dots on, pressing go and calling the doctor. I know what a QRS complex should look like and that lead II is my rhythm strip but that's about it.

To be honest at this stage of med school, we're not expected to know much more than that, but we have been given a bit more knowledge and explanation for what we should expect to see on which lead. It feels great to have a little bit less mystery in my world and a bit more knowledge that I can apply. I'm sure it will take the remainder of my course to really get to grips with ECG's, but I'm happy that I've understood everything they've explained so far.

yup, I think I'll live
I've been told that ECG's and CXr's are the hardest things to analyse, but the most useful. So I guess I might spend a bit extra time with this, even if it's not going to be an OSCE station, I think the clincal application warrants it.

(P.S. Anyone else see a bit of the old exercise-induced left ventricular hypertrophy? :P)


  1. Don't see the left ventricle hypertrophy, but I will take that heart rate. I think I drink too much caffeine

  2. Huzzahh! I LOVE EKG'S!!

    If you don't already have it, Dubin's "Rapid Interpretation" book is great, IMHO. Putting aside the fact that he is a creepy pedo.

    I love that this year EKG interpretation really fell into place for me, I always had a vague grasp and knew what to look for on telemetry, but it wasn't until all of our cardiac cases this fall that I had a whole bunch of AHA! moments. Wonderful. The thing that keeps me in medical school: filling in (part of) those giant gaps that used to elude me as a nurse.