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ECG does not rule out LV hypertrophy

By Caroline Price
07 September 2007
Br Med J 2007; Advance online publication

MedWire News: Electrocardiographic criteria should not be used to rule out left ventricular (LV) hypertrophy in patients with hypertension, say clinicians in an advance online publication by the British Medical Journal.

Matthias Egger (Universities of Bern, Switzerland, and Bristol, UK) and colleagues conclude this after conducting a systematic review of studies testing the accuracy of six different electrocardiographic indexes.

Accurate and early diagnosis of LV hypertrophy is an important component of the care of hypertension patients, in whom it leads to a five- to 10-fold increase in cardiovascular risk, explain the researchers, but the appropriate diagnostic work-up of suspected LV hypertrophy remains unclear.

Egger and co-workers set out to clarify the accuracy of commonly used electrocardiographic indexes, focusing on their ability to rule out LV hypertrophy in patients with arterial hypertension.

"As the electrocardiogram (ECG) will mainly be used to rule out the diagnosis of LV hypertrophy, we were particularly interested in the sensitivity and the likelihood ratio of a negative ECG result," they note.

SOURCE: MedWire News


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