slideshow widget

Thursday, July 30, 2009

5 Common myths about performing EKGs

Since I'm the fastest and best EKG technician in the world (yes I'm arrogant. Just call my Ricky Henderson). I thought I'd take this moment to clarify some myths about doing EKGs that slow some of my fellow EKG techs down.

Yes, that's right, if you eliminate the following myths from your EKG routine, you should be able to speed up your time:

Fallacy: I have to set the machine on the left side of the patient.

Truth: The machine does not have to be on the left side of the bed. In fact, I usually set it at the back of the bed so it's out of the way.

Fallacy: The patient has to be flat

Truth: The patient does not need to be flat. You can get the same good EKG whether the patient is supine or sitting on the edge of the bed (although while sitting it's sometimes a challenge keeping the leads from falling off)

Fallacy: No one can be touching the patient when you are performing the test

Truth: I do the EKG test while lab is drawing blood or the nurse is inserting the IV all the time, and this never effects the results. There is no reason you can't share the patient with other technicians while performing this test.

Fallacy: For males, you have to shave the patient.

Truth: I rarely shave patients to do this procedure, and rarely have a poor EKG as a result. So long as you can move enough hair aside to get the stickers to stick, you're good to go.

Fallacy: For females, you have to expose breasts.

Truth: I usually cover the patient with a blanket up to her belly button, and pull up the gown so it's just under the breaths. I rarely ever see breasts. This method works very well for anxious females, and especially young sensitive ones. Some guys who pull the gown down from the top use a towel to cover the breast. Either method will work great, and your patient may appreciate your special care.

Fallacy: You have to prep the skin before doing the test.

Truth: I can honestly say I have never prepped the skin in all my years doing EKGs. The only time I prep skin is when I want the leads to stay on long term, such as when I set up Holter Monitors.

Fallacy: You can't do an EKG when the patients legs are crossed.

Truth: Yes you can.

No comments: