Vital Signs: A Twitch of the Heart

When a cardiac nurse collapses during a stress test, her physicians must track down a rare heart condition before it kills her.

By H. Lee Kagan|Wednesday, September 26, 2012
I was checking on my patients in the cardiac monitoring unit at the hospital where I am on staff, when Denise, a 31-year-old nurse on the unit, stopped me to ask about chest pains she was having. “I think I need to come see you,” she said. Denise had been my patient for several years. “I’ve been having these pains off and on. It’s been more than a month, and they’re not going away.” Denise was clenching her fist over her mid-chest—a signal that, ...

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