Trick of the trade: Quieting the shaky EKG tracing

Oct 11, 11
Trick of the trade: Quieting the shaky EKG tracing


EKGtremorA patient with Parkinson’s disease presents with chest pain to your ED. Her tremors prevent you from getting a good quality EKG because of the movement artifact.

How can you eliminate this artifact? (No cheating with rocuronium.)

Trick of the Trade
Have the patient sit on his/her hands.


Although I haven’t tried this myself, this trick apparently works for people with upper extremity tremors and movement disorders. Has anyone used this trick? It’s been referenced in: Burdick E350 Operating Manual. Milton, Wis: Siemens Burdick, Inc; 1990.

Thanks to Brooke, RN for this tip, and Alex for being a hand-sitting model!

Author information

Michelle Lin, MD

ALiEM Founder and CEO
Professor and Digital Innovation Lab Director
Department of Emergency Medicine
University of California, San Francisco

The post Trick of the trade: Quieting the shaky EKG tracing appeared first on ALiEM.

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