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How Echocardigraphy Entered the Digital Age (Part 4) Written by: Dr. Harvey Feigenbaum

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  • How Echocardigraphy Entered the Digital Age (Part 4) Written by: Dr. Harvey Feigenbaum

    How This History Influences Today’s Stress Echocardiography

    How does the evolution of digital echocardiography influence stress echocardiography today? You may recall that our early digital echocardiographic images consisted of 8 frames captured at 50 ms intervals and played back at 100 ms intervals. Digital stress echocardiography was developed at this time. We were essentially only recording only systole because that was all of the digital memory that we had at the time. Despite that limitation, we were able to record regional wall motion abnormalities. Later when more digital memory was available, we recorded the full cardiac cycle as we do in real time. Some people thought that we recorded systole only on purpose and it was the preferred way to record stress echocardiograms even when the available memory was not an issue. So many today still record only systole which is not necessary and probably is not the best way since there is a good possibility that the addition of strain could be a useful supplement to detecting wall motion abnormalities when looking for ischemia. A characteristic finding of ischemia with strain is post systolic strain. If one only records systole, the strain finding of ischemia will be missed.
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