New ECG Cheat Sheet

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The nature of residency is looking up the same information again and again until it sticks in your head. Reading ECGs takes practice and one needs to develop a systematic way to read them. As a senior resident now, I find it really fun teaching interns ECGs! So I compiled many of the resources I’ve read about ECGs into a simple one-page rapid interpretation pdf!

Download the one-page rapid interpretation ECG cheat sheet v5.2 here (last update 5/2018).ecgcheat5thumbnail

Features/Notes:

  • It is organized roughly how one would typically read an ECG. EKG cheat sheet pdf hits the major points in the order that you might present to an attending:
    • Rate
    • Rhythm
    • Axis deviation
    • Hypertrophy (atrial, ventricle)
    • Intervals (PR, QRS, QT), segments
    • Myocardial ischemia/infarction
  • Futura typeface for style and readability and because Wes Anderson is partial to it
  • Half-fold design to fit a doctor’s white coat
  • Many common things I look up are included (ie. interval lengths, QT lengths)
  • In particular, I found many people confused about the criteria for diagnosing ischemia and infarction, Q waves, and T wave inversions. So I defined those and gave examples.
  • Of note, many resources claim different definitions/criteria to diagnose certain parts of the ECG (ie. LVH). I chose what appeared to be the most common and the easiest for myself to remember.

Last updates:

  • 7/3/2015: Added QTc prolongation lengths for males and females, changed some letter casing
  • 9/23/2015: Added the definitions for STEMI and NSTEMI.
  • 7/18/2016: Rearranged sections. Added R wave. Added RBB. Added sources.
  • 5/24/2018: Updated QTc intervals

Sources:

  • ECG tutorials on UpToDate (Basic principles of ECG analysis, Myocardial ischemia and infarction)
  • Making Sense of the ECG by Houghton
  • Pocket Medicine by Sabatine
  • Third Universal Definition of Myocardial Infarction by Thygesen et al
  • lifeinthefastlane.com

Old versions:

AWESOME.

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