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March 15, 1965

Electrocardiographic Analysis by Computer

JAMA. 1965;191(11):922-924. doi:10.1001/jama.1965.03080110046011

The desirability of conserving the electrocardiographer's time and energy by automation of the routine involved in the interpretation of a large daily load of electrocardiograms is self-evident. Two aspects of this load, namely the recording of the traces and final interpretation of them in terms of the total clinical picture presented by the patient, are not likely to yield in any considerable degree to handling by machine. By contrast it is in the areas of statistical analysis, codification, quantitative differential diagnosis, and speedy retrieval of information that the computer will contribute in a most profound degree to electrocardiography.

Certain old and a few new principles relative to recording must be observed perhaps even more rigorously than the former were alone. The reason is that the computer cannot recognize distortions caused by slow-deflection times, discrepancies in electrode resistances, and misplacement of lead wires. Further, if the data for differential diagnosis of

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