Quick question on monitoring

  1. Hi all,
    I'm a student, working on a case study for class. I have a copy of a monitor strip...which appears to have been copied about a dozen times!! My question is this: How much time does each "tick" on the strip indicate? Or, what is the time between each major line on the strip? Thanks for your help.
  2. Visit PJMommy profile page

    About PJMommy

    Joined: Apr '03; Posts: 518; Likes: 46


  3. by   SmilingBluEyes
    the LITTLE tiny squares represent 10 seconds each. 6 of these----and two darker lines, represent 1 MINUTE. And our monitors mark TIME (actually imprinting time values) on our strips every 10 minutes. Hope this helps!
  4. by   PJMommy
    It helps very much! Thank you!
  5. by   jenccrn
    What kind of monitor strip are you talking about? If you are referring to an EKG monitoring strip, the values given by Smiling Blue eyes would be incorrect.

    On an EKG strip the smallest boxes are time values of 0.04 seconds each. The bigger box (5 of the smallest boxes) is 0.2 seconds. That means each it would take 5 of these bigger boxes to make 1 second, etc...

    This is standard for regular EKG rhythms strips and 12 lead EKG"s, there are some monitors that will format prinouts differently. say like a 2 hour strip in one page. You can tell this by the size of the QRS. They are very small and "scrunched" together. They do not look like a regular EKG rhythm strip would. These are for detecting variations from normal, such as arrythmias. Perhaps this is what Smiling Blue Eyes was referring to.

    If per chance you were speaking of another type of monitor strip, I apologize for the interruption.

    Last edit by jenccrn on Jul 29, '03
  6. by   SmilingBluEyes
    I believed since this was posted in the OB forum she was asking about a FETAL HEART MONITORING strip and if I am right, the info I gave should be accurate. I agree, if we are talking EKG strips that is a different animal altogether!!!!!
  7. by   PJMommy
    Yes, and sorry I didn't clarify but SmilingBlueEyes was correct in assuming I meant fetal monitoring strips.
  8. by   fergus51
    Ours would be either 10 or 15 seconds depending on the machine we were using.
  9. by   at your cervix
    Machines also have different settings. Most likely each light line is 10 sec and each darker line is 1 min, however, that is only if the monitor is set at 3cm per min (which is the most common setting), however some monitors trace at 1 cm per min, therefore, the markings would be different. I think that you are probably pretty safe in assuming that the monitor is set at 3 cm per min, as most are!
  10. by   SmilingBluEyes
    standard in the USA, anyhow, is 3cm per min, I am told in AWHONN workshops. That is what I based my answer on. To the OP, ask your hospital what they are using. That is the best way to find out instead of letting us confuse you here.
  11. by   Dayray
  12. by   mother/babyRN
    In a labor situation, I will usually teach the patients, with focus on the dad, that one large square is worth 1 minute of time and the smaller squares within represent 10 seconds. Then I tell them what a contraction looks like and where they are on the paper...I show them how much time it takes between contractions. I do this because most guys come to the occasion, as most guys do, with the intention of fixing things. They are often totally lost in a labor situation because it is mostly women and their woman is in pain, which they cannot fix. What they can do is be at least minimally distracted by learning how the monitor works basically, and how to disconnect and reconnect the color coded cords when the patient is up to the bathroom....