ECG (Electrocardiogram) Interpretation Training Program - Reference Manual
NAVAL SUBMARINE MEDICAL RESEARCH LAB GROTON CT
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Medical evacuation from a patrolling nuclear submarine is costly in terms of risk to the patient, the expense of evacuation, and the compromise to the submarines mission. The medical responsibilities are borne by an Independent Duty 8402 Corpsman who must independently diagnose and manage any serious illnesses which present during patrol. This includes making recommendations regarding evacuation to a shore-based facility. His diagnostic task is complicated by mission constraints which often prevent communication with shore-based medical facilities and by the limited medical diagnostic facilities aboard nuclear submarines. Chest pain is the second or third most common presentation of serious illness aboard ship, being clearly outnumbered only by abdominal pain cases. In the course of developing a system to assist in the diagnosis of chest pain syndromes, it became clear that ECG data was necessary. An attempt to pattern a system after the at-sea abdominal pain diagnostic system demonstrated inadequate efficacy. The chest pain diagnostic system is being re-evaluated using ECG data as an integral component. A breakthrough in technology has led to the development of a compact, three- channel ECG recorder which interacts by computer with the strip. Wide availability and demand for this recorder is anticipated. It is desirable that the submarine Hospital Corpsman be able to scan and if necessary overread the strip and computer-reading. To this end, an Electrocardiogram Interpretation Training Tape has been developed and distributed prior to delivery of a complete chest pain diagnostic system.
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