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Giant U waves: an important clinical clue

Authors VERMA, Figueredo VM, Greenspan AM, Pressman GS

Published 11 April 2011 Volume 2011:2 Pages 51—55

DOI https://doi.org/10.2147/RRCC.S18459

Review by Single-blind

Peer reviewer comments 3

Nitin Verma, Vincent M Figueredo, Allan M Greenspan, Gregg S Pressman
Albert Einstein Medical Center, Philadelphia, PA, USA

Abstract: Electrocardiographic U waves are a common clinical finding, and yet are poorly understood by many physicians. They can be seen in many clinical conditions, most importantly hypokalemia and ischemic heart disease. Over the years, many theories have been put forth to explain their origin. While still not completely understood, it now appears that mechanoelectrical interactions are responsible for normal U waves. Pathologic U waves may be seen in ischemic heart disease where they sometimes point to acute ischemic events. The large U waves of hypokalemia are most likely not true U waves but rather the terminal deflection in a bifid T wave.

Keywords: U waves, hypokalemia, myocardial ischemia, electrocardiogram

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