Specializes in Currently: Certified School Nurse.
Depressed T wave, prominent U wave......arghhh!
Any suggestions? TIA
hypocaffeinemia, BSN, RN
Specializes in Critical Care.
Sep 2, 2008
Depressed T wave, prominent U wave......arghhh!Any suggestions? TIA
I'm a long-time monitor tech finishing up nursing- I've yet to come across any sort of decent mnemonic device for this. The best thing I can tell you is to just rote memorize them.
Maybe apply what the electrolyte does at a physiological level to predict its effects on an EKG tracing.
For instance, calcium is critical for contraction- a deficiency would lead to prolonged QT segment and possibly dysrhythmias.
Potassium is essential for repolarization, so a deficiency would lead to depressed T waves, while an excess would lead to quick, tall, peaked T-waves.
I suggest reviewing your A&P book regarding cardiac conduction for hints.
One other thing, as it's a personal battle of mine: if you only see changes in several leads and not universally, you need to consider something that affects just the area of the heart demonstrating changes.
For instance, tall, peaked T waves in only the inferior leads (II, III, AVF) is not an indicator of hyperkalemia, but may be the early warning sign for an acute MI in that region.
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