Index
Ep Defined | Getting Started | Working in the EP Lab
Right Atrium | Right Ventricle | Left Atrium | Left Ventricule | Cardiac Conduction | Cardiac Cell Properties | Action Potential | Sympathetic or Not | Med Page
Electrograms Defined | Recording Modes | Electrode Spacing | Filters | EGM Interpretation | Arrhythmia Analysis
The Physical Lab | Tools of the Trade
Setting Up | Catheter Placement | Baseline Measurement | SNRT | Conduction Study | Arrhythmia Induction | Pacing Protocols | Ablation | Tilt Table | Secrets to Success
Bradycardia | Atrial Tach | Atrial Flutter | Atrial Fibrillation | AVNRT | AVRT | Ventricular Tachycardia
Surface ECG's | Intracardiac Questions | Med Challenge | Advanced

The EP Lab - Tools of the Trade

Electrophysiology - Driven by Technology

          One of the things I enjoy most about working in cardiac electrophysiology is that I get to play with some of the coolest toys. I still think back to my early days in EP, sitting in the lab surrounded by computerized controls that displayed information on multiple monitors. I felt like I was on the bridge of the starship Enterprise on some mission to explore the far reaches of the galaxy. In front of me was the EP Med Workmate with the intracardiac signals and the cardiac stimulator. To my left was the RF generator with its digital readouts that were so important during ablation. To my right was the EnSite 3D Cardiac Mapping System with the coolest screen of all, a 3 dimensional geometry with a moving map that displayed the electrical activation of the chamber we were mapping. I was in geek heaven!!!

          The EP Lab is loaded with a wide variety of equipment, each with its own controls and functions. For those who are unfamiliar with the function of all the various pieces of equipment, the EP Lab can look like a scene out of some science fiction movie. There are cables and wires strung across the floor, connecting different components like an electronic web. There is the hum of computerized circuits along with screens filled with flashing colors and lines that can only be deciphered by those who have been initiated into this strange realm. Here, the Tech’s rule, for without their knowledge, the room would sit empty, cold and quiet.

          This section is dedicated to the various pieces of equipment that fill the EP Lab. Strangely enough, in most cases, learning how to operate much of this equipment precedes understanding of the information collected by it. Some people even get by for an extended period of time knowing nothing more than how to keep all the machines happy. While this is valuable knowledge, it is still the opinion of the author that you do not truly work in EP until you have learned the language of electrograms. That knowledge is however, addressed elsewhere in this web site. Here, we will focus on the different pieces of equipment that comprise the EP Lab.

 

 

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