Pattern recognition is an important learning tool in the interpretation of ECGs. Unfortunately, until faced with a patient with an arrhythmia or structural heart disease, pediatric practitioners generally receive limited exposure to ECGs. The ability to clearly distinguish an abnormal ECG pattern from a normal variant in an emergency situation is an essential skill, but one that many pediatricians feel ill-prepared to utilize confidently. In "Pediatric ECG Interpretation: An Illustrative Guide", Drs. Deal, Johnsrude and Buck aim to address this issue by illustrating many of the ECG patterns a pediatric practitioner is likely to encounter. ECG illustrations with interpretations are presented in several categories: normal children of all ages, acquired abnormalities such as hypertrophy or electrolyte disorders, and common congenital heart disease lesions. Later sections cover bradycardia, supraventricular and ventricular arrhythmias, and a basic section on pacemaker ECGs.
Simple techniques used to interpret mechanisms of arrhythmias are described as a resource for practitioners in cardiology, adult electrophysiology, or pediatrics who may not have a readily accessible resource for these ECG examples. The accompanying CD has been prepared with 3 purposes in mind: as a self-evaluation tool for interpretation of ECGs; as a teaching reference for Cardiology fellows, residents, and house staff; and, as an invaluable resource for the Emergency Room physician or pediatrician who might obtain an ECG on a pediatric patient.