Positioning - Performing 12-Lead ECGs
Traditionally the patient should be supine and well-supported in the bed. No pillows unless documented and permitted by your facility. However, many patients, especially cardiac patients may have a very hard time lying supine.
Any time you have to change the position of the patient or use additional supportive measures (pillow under the knees or head), it is important that this be documented.
Changing the physical position may be enough to influence the shape of the cardiac complexes and make it more difficult for the physician to interpret and diagnose the patient. So, any changes must always be documented.
If there are metal side rails on the bed or gurney and it is necessary to raise them to stabilize the patient on the bed or for safety. Always make certain that there is a barrier (sheet, blanket, pillows or rail pad) between the patient and the rail.
Authors and Sources
Authors and Reviewers
- EKG heart rhythm modules: Thomas O'Brien.
- EKG monitor simulation developer: Steve Collmann
12 Lead Course: Dr. Michael Mazzini, MD.
- Spanish language EKG: Breena R. Taira, MD, MPH
- Medical review: Dr. Jonathan Keroes, MD
- Medical review: Dr. Pedro Azevedo, MD, Cardiology
- Last Update: 11/8/2021
Electrocardiography for Healthcare Professionals, 5th Edition
Kathryn Booth and Thomas O'Brien
ISBN10: 1260064778, ISBN13: 9781260064773
McGraw Hill, 2019
Rapid Interpretation of EKG's, Sixth Edition
Cover Publishing Company
12 Lead EKG for Nurses: Simple Steps to Interpret Rhythms, Arrhythmias, Blocks, Hypertrophy, Infarcts, & Cardiac Drugs
Create Space Independent Publishing
Heart Sounds and Murmurs: A Practical Guide with Audio CD-ROM 3rd Edition
Elsevier-Health Sciences Division
Barbara A. Erickson, PhD, RN, CCRN
The Virtual Cardiac Patient: A Multimedia Guide to Heart Sounds, Murmurs, EKG
Jonathan Keroes, David Lieberman
Publisher: Lippincott Williams & Wilkin)
ISBN-10: 0781784425; ISBN-13: 978-0781784429
- Project Semilla, UCLA Emergency Medicine, EKG Training Breena R. Taira, MD, MPH