Interpretation of Electrocardiogram and Emergency Management of Myocardial Infarction: A Survey among Doctors
A virtuous understanding of Electrocardiogram is an indispensable ability and essential skill required in doctors. This study assessed the understanding of the electrocardiogram and acute management of myocardial infarction among emergency doctors, general practitioners, medical officers, house officers and postgraduate students.
A cross sectional survey was conducted for 7 months on n=312 doctors working in tertiary care public and private hospitals and as General practitioners in Karachi, Pakistan. Convenience sampling technique was used. Participants were asked to interpret a 12 lead electrocardiogram attached to questionnaire and write down their findings and diagnoses. They were then asked about its acute management. ANOVA and Chi square was applied for making inferences from the acquired data. p value of less than 0.05 was taken as significant. Approval was taken from the Ethical Review board.
Knowledge was assessed on basis of designation, 84.6% of the emergency doctors correctly interpreted the ECG while 75.4% of general physicians read it correctly. House officers and medical officers had the lowest scores in ECG interpretation. Years of experience demonstrated inverse results with >5 years experience at the lowest scores for interpretation of ECG and MI management. Interpretation scores of ECG were significantly high (p value 0.03) in participants who attended workshops compared to those who did not.
Emergency doctors had better scores when it comes to ECG interpretation and management of MI. Frequent workshops and cardiology rotations should be mandatory for health care professionals to improve essential skill and knowledge of acute management of myocardial infarction.