INTRODUCTION

Welcome to "Basic ECG Interpretation". This course is presented to you in a new and unique way, via the Internet. As such, there are a number of different and interesting methods that we use to provide you the information. You'll be struck how alive the information can become when you're involved with the presentation. You'll find the animations jump from the screen to enhance your understanding of the information. But most of all, you'll find the learning fun!

SCENARIO

You're about to join students in a series of second year allied health classes at Sutherland College. Prof. Bachman is the instructor for the course and will be leading you through a course in Basic ECG Interpretation. These sessions follow Prof. Bachman in both the classroom and a number of Lab sessions. In the Lab sessions, you will be presented with a number of questions and/or ECG strips for interpretation. If you pay attention in class and do your homework you'll do just fine. Finally, along with other students, you'll be taken to a local healthcare facility where you'll join Dr. Oldfield during medical rounds on a cardiac investigation unit.

In this course, you'll be introduced to a number of characters. Besides Prof. Bachman and Dr. Oldfield, you'll meet several other students who are taking the course. Judy and Jeff are old friends whom you met last year. They are enroled in the same course as you and fortunately have been assigned to the same Lab group.

Let's peek in on Prof. Bachman during one of his classes.

ENJOY THE COURSE!

THE LAB

Prof.
Bachman
Well good afternoon. It seems that the hail we had last week did more damage than was initially thought. Apparently the ceiling in the classroom will need more repairs. As a result, we're going to meet in the Lab for the next few sessions.

Now then, at the end of last class, I gave you a six-step approach to the systematic analysis of an ECG. I also asked you to take a strip home and bring your findings to class today. How did you all do? Judy, let's start with you. What's the first step and what did you find?

Judy Step 1 is determine the rate. I counted the number of R waves in a six second period and multiplied this number by 10 to obtain the rate per minute. I got a rate of about 80 beats per minute.

Prof.
Bachman
What's the next step Pat?
Pat I can't recall. Evaluate the rhythm?
Prof.
Bachman
Very good Pat. In Step 2 you measure out the R-R interval and compare this to the other R-R intervals. If they are regular, then the ventricular rhythm is regular. Was it?

Pat Yes.
Prof.
Bachman
Right. So what do we have then Chris?
Chris In Step 3 we look to see if there a P wave for every QRS?
Prof.
Bachman
That's right. Are there any QRS complexes without P waves? Are there any P waves without QRS complexes? Are the P waves all uniform in appearance? In other words, do they all come from the same atrial focus?

Chris Everything looked fine to me. Every QRS had a P wave and each P wave was okay.

We hope you enjoy this brief intro and look forward to having you participate in the full course!

Register for the ECG Interpretation Course