E-point Septal Separation in the Patient with Congestive Heart Failure

Perhaps never explained so clearly, Cisewki and Alerhand’s article on EPSS is a wonderful read. Bottom line to remember: EPSS > 7 mm was 87% sensitive and 75% specific at identifying reduced EF (<50%).  This is the cutoff generally used to point to an abnormal EF (but isn’t it all about stroke volume, really?)Read more

Pacemakers Review Pt. 2

Cardiac pacing as an intervention can be conceptualized as addressing problems in electrophysiological conduction and/or.  So, for example, if there is a disruption in the electrical continuity between the atrium and the ventricle, a pacer maybe function by detecting a normal sinus impulse in the atrium (there is typically a right atrial lead connected toRead more

Pacemakers Review Pt. 1

The pursuit of mastery over cardiovascular emergencies demands a rough familiarity with implanted devices which includes why they get implanted in the first place (indications), how they work, how they malfunction, and how they affect the EKG., among other features. Today we’ll we’ll start with the basics of implanted pacemakers including indications, anatomy, and radiography.Read more

SVT and Paranasal Etripamil

Have you had one of those resus shifts where everyone and their mother seems to be in an arrhythmia? Have some of them been older patients with SVT that just make you a little antsy about giving medications like adenosine multiple times after Valsalva maneuvers haven’t worked or then having to try an IV betaRead more

The Sinai Troponin

What is Sinai’s troponin assay? Answer: ARCHITECT STAT Troponin-I A Global Task Force with involvement from the American Heart Association (AHA), American College of Cardiology Foundation (ACCF), European Society of Cardiology (ESC), and World Heart Federation (WHF) agreed on a universal definition of myocardial infarction that supports use of cTnI as a preferred biomarker for myocardial injury. Elevated levelsRead more

M is for morphine

Remember MONA (morphine, oxygen, nitro, aspirin) from med school? Well, she may be just “A” now…. Over the years, all of these treatments (except for good old aspirin) have become somewhat controversial in the treatment of ACS. Let’s focus on morphine today. Morphine’s obvious benefit is its ability to control pain and therefore decrease sympatheticRead more

How Safe is Mechanical CPR?

Question – How safe is mechanical CPR compared to manual CPR? There are two devices used for mechanical CPR – the AutoPulse and LUCAS – neither of which has been demonstrated to show a survival benefit over manual CPR in recent studies (CIRC, LINC, PARAMEDIC). Could these devices be causing more injuries compared to manualRead more

What Patients Require Emergent Cath Lab Activation?

Question – STEMI criteria are insensitive for all cases of acute coronary artery occlusion. Among patients with chest pain, what are the other criteria for cath lab activation? Let’s talk more ACS. Patients that need emergent reperfusion therapy are those that have an acute coronary occlusion. ECG findings of ST-elevation will not catch all cases ofRead more

The Echo in ACS

Case – 70 year old male mhx of HTN, IDDM presents with 2 hours of exertional chest pain. His ECG in triage is unremarkable for any ischemic changes. He appears uncomfortable and over the next 30 minutes requires escalating doses of nitroglycerin for chest pain. A repeat ECG is unchanged. You decide to echo himRead more

A Young Man Presents with Syncope

Case – 26M with no medical history presents with chest pain and palpitations. He states that he passed out while walking. He denies associated symptoms or family history of sudden cardiac death. ECG: Question – What are the ECG abnormalities noted here? Diagnosis and Workup? ________________________________________________________ Answer – Arrhythmogenic RV Dysplasia. This is the second mostRead more