ECG Difficulties

I never considered just how difficult trace analysis could be. Don’t get me wrong; I knew it would be hard, I just didn’t fully appreciate quite how hard.

During lectures on specific arrhythmias, when ECGs are displayed, they generally contain the abnormalities that make up the subject matter so it doesn’t take long to come to the correct answer, but looking at a trace without any history or prompting as to the condition, is still overwhelming to me. So overwhelming, in fact, that I often feel like I’m falling short of the mark with regards to my learning as a whole. The TSP ECG section is as much for my benefit as it is for you guys, in that I’ve found analysing the ones selected for posting incredibly difficult.
No matter what answer I come to, there’s always the lingering worry that I’ve missed something.

How much is too much, with regards to analysing?

What’s a result of over-analyzing, and what’s accurate?

Textbook traces, whether clinical, or stylised, have been selected as the best possible example of the rhythms under scrutiny, so it stands to reason that they won’t exactly mimic those that will be encounered in the field. In my limited experience, clinical traces contain a great deal of variation and have thus far, rarely resembled anything you’d find in a book.

They have been difficult, yes, but they have also been possible. This will all become easier, with practice (I assume/hope), so I hope you all find the analysis quiz good practice, as it’s certainly proving to be that for me.


Screenshot (124)


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I'm a qualified clinical physiologist with a keen interest in free open access meducation (FOAMed), pacing and electrophysiology.

One thought on “ECG Difficulties”

  1. Great reflection man! I couldn’t agree more. I think at this stage in our learning if we can identify what has changed from norm then we r good. The diagnostic accuracy will come with repeated practice as u say thats why this idea is sooo good bud cant wait to get involved, im sure others on our course will want to aswell!!


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