WHY YOU DON’T NEED A HOLTER MONITOR IF YOU’RE MARRIED
Many patients with “cryptogenic” stroke, meaning of unknown cause, have a heart rhythm abnormality, atrial fibrillation, that comes and goes and is termed “paroxysmal.” These patients are often monitored for a day or two in the hospital and then another day with a 24-hour Holter monitor and perhaps another 20 to 30 days with other monitors. A new study found that of about 250 patients with this type of stroke, 25% were later found to have this abnormal rhythm. Patients’ families can be instructed to check the pulse. Healthcare professionals had a diagnostic sensitivity of 97% and relatives 77%. Self-measurements were performed by about 90% of patients, and their sensitivity was 50%.
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