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The humble electrocardiogram
  1. Eleanor Marsh1,
  2. Peter O’Callaghan2,
  3. Philip Smith3
  1. 1
    Specialist Registrar in Neurology, Department of Neurology, University Hospital of Wales, Cardiff, UK
  2. 2
    Consultant Cardiologist, Department of Cardiology, University Hospital of Wales, Cardiff, UK
  3. 3
    Consultant Neurologist, The Epilepsy Unit, Department of Neurology, University Hospital of Wales, Cardiff, UK
  1. Professor P E M Smith, The Epilepsy Unit, University Hospital of Wales, Heath Park, Cardiff CF14 4XW, UK; SmithPE{at}


Many patients with potentially life-threatening cardiac conditions presenting with transient loss of consciousness are referred first to neurology clinics. Therefore, neurologists must remain competent to interpret electrocardiograms (ECGs) and in particular be able to identify those rare conditions that predict sudden cardiac death. A 12-lead ECG is cheap and readily available, and can give essential diagnostic information. Here the authors review abnormalities in, and indications for, the ECG in neurological practice.

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