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Heart disease

Heart disease

M172/0415

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Credit

DR P. MARAZZI / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY DR P. MARAZZI / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption

Heart disease. Electrocardiogram (ECG) of the heartbeat of a 78-year-old man with ventricular hypertrophy. An ECG measures the pumping of the heart's chambers using 12 electrodes (I-III, V1- V6, aVR, aVL and aVF), recording it as electrical waves (yellow). In ventricular hypertrophy the cells of the lower heart chambers enlarge. This patient may also have suffered an anterior myocardial infarction (MI, heart attack), the death of the front of the heart due to blockage of a coronary artery. This is indicated by the absence of R-waves (pointed peaks) in the traces for electrodes V1-V3. However, such an effect may also be seen in ventricular hypertrophy alone.

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