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What does the heart monitor (EKG) do in the ICU?

Deb Cordes
Deb Cordes on behalf of Sigma Nursing
Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation Specialist

Patients in the ICU are often placed on a heart monitor. The purpose of the heart monitor is to monitor the heart rate (how fast or slow it is beating) and the rhythm (how regular or irregular the heart beat is). It is important for the nurse and doctor to be able to monitor the heart rate and rhythm of a patient who is very ill. Heart rate and rhythm can help the nurse and doctor treat any problems that the patient might be having. The monitor can be set to alarm and alert the nurse if the heart rate goes to fast, to slow or shows any irregular rhythm.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.