ECG and EKG paper- A fundamental accessory in ECG machine
The ECG and EKG is one and the same thing. ECG stands for Electrocardiogram which is abbreviated from the German word Elektrodiogramm (EKG). Electrocardiography is a graphic produced by an electrocardiograph that records the electrical activity of heart with respect to a specific time period. In this process, electrodes are attached to outer skin across the chest and the reading is recorded by a device.
The recording produced during this process is called as electrocardiogram (ECG or EKG) and they are recorded on a paper called EKG or ECG paper. This paper is a fundamental part of the ECG machine. Technicians would be unable to record the electrical activity of the heart if this paper is not available.
Electrical signals, in the form of a wave are printed on ECG paper as graph and usually this graph paper has a background pattern in the form of squares of 1mm, red or green in color. It also has a bold division of 5 mm in both the directions, vertical and horizontal. In the graph, x axis represents time on a scale of 25mm and y axis represents mV on a scale of 1 cm which is standard.
Paper has some specific speed. It moves with a speed of 25 mm per second. Layout on the paper depends upon the number of leads. Leads are the electrical cables which attach the electrodes to the ECG recorder. The numbers of leads are responsible for the segments recorded on paper and each column normally records the same period of time.
A correction or tuning signal can be integrated with the record. An average signal of 1 mV must travel the stylus vertically 1cm and the two larger squares on paper. EKG papers are the hard copies which act as the report of a patient. And doctors give there reviews after checking the printed paper, ECG only.
ECG paper is a fundamental requirement of the ECG machine. This paper comes in rolls. There are a number of manufacturing companies of ECG paper rolls. Paper should be of high quality; somewhere quality of ECG paper is required for maintaining the standard speed of paper in the printer of ECG machine. World's leading ECG paper roll's manufacturers are GE Medical, Phillips, Welsh Allyn, Physio Control and Data scope.
Nowadays the reading in EKG is not only recorded on paper but also on the computer, sometimes on both. ECG paper contains 5 x 5 blocks. There exist few types of ECG or EKG paper. This paper is also called as EKG strip. A good and standard strip has large columns to print the drastic changes in electrical waves or signal received by the electrodes.
Reduce clutter type rolls of EKG paper or strips are used for printing the recordings for a longer period of time. And Z-fold types of rolls are usually used for short term period of time but there is one disadvantage that it is fed manually into the machine, every time the ECG machine is used.