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ECG interpretation: the basics

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Presentation to participants undertaking the: Critical Care Transition Program at ACT Health, 2008

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ECG interpretation: the basics

  1. 1. ECG INTERPRETATION: the basics Jamie Ranse Critical Care Education Coordinator Staff Development Unit ACT Health
  2. 2. Overview <ul><li>Conduction Pathways </li></ul><ul><li>Systematic Interpretation </li></ul><ul><li>Common abnormalities in Critical Care </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Supraventricular arrhythmias </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Ventricular arrhythmias </li></ul></ul>
  3. 3. Conduction Pathways
  4. 4. <ul><li>P wave = atrial depolarisation. </li></ul><ul><li>PR Interval = impulse from atria to ventricles. </li></ul><ul><li>QRS complex = ventricular depolarisation. </li></ul><ul><li>ST segment = isoelectric - part of repolarisation. </li></ul><ul><li>T wave = usually same direction as QRS - ventricular repolarisation. </li></ul><ul><li>QT Interval = This interval spans the onset of depolarisation to the completion of repolarization of the ventricles. </li></ul>Conduction Pathways
  5. 5. Interpretation
  6. 6. <ul><li>Rate = Number of P’s (atrial) R’s (ventricular) per minute (6 second [30 squares] X 10 = minute rate). </li></ul><ul><li>Rhythm = Regular or irregular. Map P-P and R-R intervals. </li></ul>Interpretation P rate: 8 x 10 = 80 R rate: 8 x 10 = 80
  7. 7. <ul><li>3. P wave = present, 1 per QRS, shape, duration, voltage. </li></ul><ul><li>4. P-R interval = length (0.12 - 0.2 sec = <1 big square), isoelectric. </li></ul>Interpretation
  8. 8. <ul><li>5. QRS = duration (0.06 - 0.10 ) , voltage, q or Q waves </li></ul><ul><li>6. ST Segment = shape, isoelectric with PR segment </li></ul>Interpretation
  9. 9. <ul><li>7. T wave = shape, direction </li></ul><ul><li>8. QT interval = length (R-R/2 or QT c <0.40 sec) </li></ul>Interpretation
  10. 10. Abnormalities: Supraventricular arrhythmias <ul><li>Atrial Fibrillation </li></ul><ul><li>Atrial Flutter </li></ul><ul><li>Supraventricular Tachycardia (SVT) </li></ul><ul><li>Premature Ventricular Complexes (PACs) </li></ul>Abnormalities: Ventricular arrhythmias
  11. 11. Conduction Pathways Supraventricular Narrow QRS complex Ventricular Wide QRS complex
  12. 12. Abnormalities: atrial fibrillation Rhythm: Irregular Rate: A: 350 – 650; V: varies P: poorly defined P-R: N/A QRS: narrow complex S-T: normal T: normal Q-T: normal
  13. 13. Abnormalities: atrial flutter Rhythm: Regular / Irregular Rate: A: 220 – 430; V: <300 (2:1, 3:1 or sometimes 4:1) P: Saw toothed appearance P-R: N/A QRS: narrow complex S-T: normal T: normal Q-T: normal
  14. 14. Abnormalities: supraventricular tachycardia (SVT) <ul><li>Rhythm: Regular </li></ul><ul><li>Rate: >100 </li></ul><ul><li>P: not visible </li></ul><ul><li>P-R: not defined </li></ul><ul><li>QRS: narrow complex </li></ul><ul><li>S-T: depression (sometimes) </li></ul><ul><li>T: normal </li></ul><ul><li>Q-T: prolonged (sometimes) </li></ul>
  15. 15. Abnormalities: premature ventricular complexes
  16. 16. Examples
  17. 17. Examples
  18. 18. ECG INTERPRETATION: 12 Lead
  19. 19. Overview <ul><li>Lead Placement </li></ul><ul><li>Axis </li></ul><ul><li>Common abnormalities in Critical Care </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Heart block </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Bundle branch blocks </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Life threatening arrhythmias </li></ul></ul>
  20. 20. Lead Placement <ul><li>V1 = 4th ICS right sternum </li></ul><ul><li>V2 = 4th ICS left sternum </li></ul><ul><li>V3 = midway between V2 and V4 </li></ul><ul><li>V4 = 5th ICS midclavicular </li></ul><ul><li>V5 = between V4 and V6 anterior auxiliary line </li></ul><ul><li>V6 = midauxillary line lateral to V4 and V5 </li></ul>
  21. 21. Lead Placement <ul><li>Electrical activity towards = ↑ </li></ul><ul><li>Electrical activity away = ↓ </li></ul>
  22. 22. Lead Placement
  23. 23. Axis <ul><li>The direction of an ECG waveform in the frontal plane measured in degrees </li></ul><ul><li>Represents the flow of the majority of electrical activity </li></ul><ul><li>Normally the QRS complex is measured </li></ul>
  24. 24. Axis <ul><li>Each lead has its own axis </li></ul>
  25. 25. Lead Placement <ul><li>Standard Leads (bipolar) </li></ul><ul><li>I - lateral wall </li></ul><ul><li>II - inferior wall </li></ul><ul><li>III - inferior wall </li></ul><ul><li>Augmented leads (unipolar) </li></ul><ul><li>aVR - no mans land </li></ul><ul><li>aVL - lateral wall </li></ul><ul><li>aVF - inferior wall </li></ul><ul><li>Chest Leads (unipolar) </li></ul><ul><li>V1 - septal wall </li></ul><ul><li>V2 - septal wall </li></ul><ul><li>V3 - anterior wall </li></ul><ul><li>V4 - anterior wall </li></ul><ul><li>V5 - lateral wall </li></ul><ul><li>V6 - lateral wall </li></ul>
  26. 26. Lead Placement No-mans land, inferior , lateral , anterior , septal ,
  27. 27. Abnormalities: bundle branch blocks <ul><li>QRS widened, greater than 0.12 secs </li></ul><ul><li>Change in axis </li></ul><ul><li>Difficult to interpret ECG </li></ul><ul><li>Right or Left </li></ul><ul><li>Normal P wave </li></ul><ul><li>Followed by a T wave </li></ul>
  28. 28. Abnormalities: right bundle branch blocks <ul><li>Indicates conduction problems in the right side of the heart </li></ul><ul><li>May be normal in healthy people </li></ul><ul><li>R wave in V1, ie two R waves in V1 </li></ul><ul><li>Q wave in V6 </li></ul><ul><li>Lead V1 cats ears </li></ul>
  29. 29. Abnormalities: left bundle branch blocks <ul><li>Always indicates heart disease, usually of the left side of the heart </li></ul><ul><li>Hard to interpret an ECG with LBBB </li></ul><ul><li>Lead V1 Q wave and an S wave </li></ul><ul><li>Lead V6 an R wave followed by another R wave </li></ul><ul><li>Lead V6 Rabbit ears </li></ul>
  30. 30. Abnormalities: heart block <ul><li>SA block (exit block) </li></ul><ul><li>1 st degree AV block </li></ul><ul><li>2 nd degree AV block </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Wenckeback (type I) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Mobitz (type II) </li></ul></ul><ul><li>3 rd degree AV block </li></ul>
  31. 31. Abnormalities: heart block – SA block
  32. 32. Abnormalities: heart block – 1 st degree AV
  33. 33. Abnormalities: heart block – 2 nd degree AV <ul><li>Wenkeback </li></ul><ul><li>Mobitz </li></ul>
  34. 34. Abnormalities: heart block – 3 rd degree AV
  35. 35. Abnormalities: life threatening arrhythmias <ul><li>Ventricular Tachycardia </li></ul><ul><li>Ventricular Fibrillation </li></ul><ul><li>Asystole </li></ul>
  36. 36. Abnormalities: life threatening arrhythmias - VT
  37. 37. Abnormalities: life threatening arrhythmias - VF
  38. 38. Abnormalities: life threatening arrhythmias – Asystole
  39. 39. Examples
  40. 40. Examples

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