TECHNOLOGY, MSN Health: Handheld electrocardiogram monitor ($229)

By MSN Health

handheldecgJULY 14, 2013 – Pitched “for those uncertain times when you’re not quite sure what’s going on,” this gadget measures a single EKG waveform while providing heart-rate information. The text touts the machine as “intuitively easy to use,” but Dr. Tiffany Sizemore-Ruiz, an internist and owner of Choice Physicians of South Florida, says someone not trained in how to read EKGs is unlikely to get much meaningful data from the small screen. She also doubts that someone can tell a lot from the single waveform. “In a doctor’s office, the EKG will have 12 different waveforms. You can’t diagnose anything with just one EKG strip,” she says. “It can tell an arrhythmia, but not much else.” She recommends keeping tabs on your heart by taking your pulse with your finger and seeking professional help if you’re not feeling well. “Rather than spend $229 on a monitor, go to the doctor.”


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