Anatomy >Surface Anatomy

You need to understand 4 basic concepts with regard to cardiac anatomy.

Anatomy is a very visual discipline.  While intercostal spaces and landmarks are provided, be sure to spend the majority of time studying images with the heart superimposed on the thorax.

Location - Surface Anatomy

Accurate lead placement relies on knowing where the heart is located in relation to surface landmarks on the thorax.  An important and readily palpable landmark is the sternal angle (also know as the angle of Louis).  The sternal angle is the junction between the manubrium and the body of the sternum, and corresponds to the second costal cartilage.  Again, a list is provided, but studying pictures is probably the most efficient way to master this material.
The four corners of the heart:

Surface Anatomy

Orientation – Borders of the Heart

In addition to knowing where the heart is located, it is important to visualize the location of each chamber, so that you can correlate EKG finding such as a “lateral wall MI” with the underlying anatomy.  

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