5 Tips When Looking at EKGs in Urgent Care

Jennifer Carlquist, PA-C, and course director of The Urgent Care EKG Course shares a few helpful tips when looking at EKGs from patients in urgent care. 

  • There are three questions to ask when interpreting a rhythm  
    • Is it wide or narrow?  
    • Is it fast or slow?  
    • Is it irregular or regular?  
  • If someone has COPD, it is likely their voltage will be low. The lungs are hyperinflated, so voltage has greater resistance (air) and distance to travel to get to the chest wall and be measured by an EKG. 
  • When you have an abnormally slow or fast heart rate, use the QTc. It is corrected for rate. The QT is most accurate when the heart rate is 60.  
  • If you have a lot of artifact on the EKG, you cannot trust the interval measurements from the machine. The QT will be falsely prolonged. 
  • When you are deciding if an arrythmia is afib or not, look closely for P waves. If the machine does not see P waves it will put an asterisk in the pr interval instead of a number.

This course is ideal for PAs and NPs practicing in urgent care. Whether you’re new to practice or have many years of experience, you’re sure to learn practical, evidence-based tips you can use on your next shift. You can sharpen your EKG interpretation skills, improve your accuracy, become more proficient, and boost your clinical confidence with The Urgent Care EKG Course.

Visit https://www.ebmedicine.net/ekg to learn more.

Even more content:

Check out one of our latest reels (less than one minute!) on one of the most high-risk patients you could see in urgent care from Jennifer Carlquist, the course director.

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