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February 2010 Issue
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New Device Can Help Detect Heart Attacks

By Katy Cosse
Published February 2010

A multicenter trial involving UC confirms that a new tool can show severe heart attacks in more patients, potentially leading to better diagnoses and faster treatment.

For the last two years, UC emergency medicine associate professor Gregory Fermann, MD, has been studying the PRIME ECG, an electrocardiogram (ECG) tool with 80 leads to measure electrical activity.

The tool has given physicians a broader reading of the heart muscle than the traditional 12-lead ECG.

Fermann says the 80-lead ECG also presents the data in a different way, allowing physicians to toggle through each lead like they would a CT-scan.

“Where this device is going to fit in is for somebody who has a suspicious story for a heart attack who may have a normal or non-diagnostic 12-lead ECG,” says Fermann. “Potentially, you could apply this 80-lead ECG, see the changes that were absent on the 12-lead and then act by calling the cardiologist … and getting the patient to the catheterization lab.”

The PRIME ECG is made by Heartscape Technologies, Inc. Fermann has reported no financial interest in Heartscape.

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