Vital Signs

When is a cardiac patient's abnormality perfectly normal after all?

Wednesday, March 1, 2000
Mrs. lopez, barely 30 and clearly in good physical condition, would not be put off. "The pain starts here," she said, pointing to the left of her breastbone, "where it shoots down my left hand and spreads like fire up my neck. I can't catch my breath. My heart goes boom-boom-boom all the time. It keeps getting worse. I've tried everything." Her EKG was flat-out normal, and I held the tracing up for her to see. "You're perfect," I announced. "And to my...

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