Pacemakers and Practicum

Kathy Cardiology Technologist 0 Comments


Hope that everyone is doing great! 2 more weeks until our Practicum and I can’t wait to apply all the knowledge I’ve learned into practice. During the past few weeks we had a guest speaker who is specialized in Pacemaker studies come over to our class and teach us additional techniques in how to analyze pacemaker ECGs. This session was a two day lecture. The pacemaker specialist also brought a lot of different tools which are used during pacemaker implantation. It was a very exciting moment to experience holding a pacemaker and imagine at the same time that this small device serves as a lifesaver for a critically ill patient which heart is unable to beat on its own. Analyzing pacemaker ECGs is a little more intense in terms of measurements and also the terminology aspect of it. Sometimes for us working as Cardiology Technologists requires us to perform a Pacemaker Assessment on a patient who is unable to verify with the physician what type of pacemaker he/she is having implanted. During that time we need to perform a 12 lead ECG and analyze then with our pacemaker knowledge by using appropriate measurements what type of pacemaker the patient has and also if the pacemaker is working appropriately. Thanks to our instructors, we are able to do proper assessments and be a helpful hand for the physicians to provide the patients with adequate treatment.


After our 2 day lecture we had a hospital orientation at Burnaby General Hospital with our Nuclear Medicine Instructor Jim. The tour itself was very interesting to see all different types of radiology tests done on patients. We also got a chance to get visit the Cardiology Department of Burnaby Hospital. At the time during our visit there were two patients performing Exercise Tolerance Testing. We have been able to see how an isotope is injected into the patient’s vein and how a patient feels post injection. Typical symptoms were reported as chest pain and dizziness. Having learned all this prior with our Cardiology Instructor, has made us feel more knowledgeable following the procedures at the hospital. Unfortunately, the supervisor of the Cardiology Department has not been very helpful in terms of what to talk to us Stenberg

Students and the only information she gave us was already something we have known prior coming to the department. But that is okay as we are going to explore the department by ourselves during the practicum. Our class is definitely grateful, that Stenberg College has arranged for us this field trip just so we have an idea of how Nuclear Medicine and Cardiology departments look like.

We just have recently completed our last course named Cardiac Diagnostic Procedures which is a one week course that introduces the electronic health record system. This course has taught us how to enter patient’s data accurately and also how to order diagnostic tests including admitting a patient and also discharging through patient after care. As this course was our last one to complete before our practicum, we all are very happy about our accomplishment and can’t wait to work hard during our practicum. I’m really looking forward to write all of you about my first couple of weeks into my preceptorship. Thanks to all of you for reading my blogs and I really hope that my writing encourages you to enroll to Stenberg College as I can assure you that it will change your life.


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