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A cardiac event monitor (or LOOP monitor) is a patient-activated recorder that is worn over a 14-day period to evaluate certain infrequent transient symptoms, such as dizziness, palpitations and syncope, that suggest a cardiac arrhythmia.
The holter monitor, which is designed for continuous 24, 48 or 72-hour ECG recording of any arrhythmias that may occur within that time, is a preferred test for patients experiencing their symptoms often and regularly. The loop monitor is more suitable for patients who experience their symptoms sporadically, for example, every few days or so, and is worn continuously for a two-week period.
Usually, rather than recording continuously, the patient wearing the loop monitor activates a recording by pressing the “record” button on the monitor. The loop monitor captures and stores ECG data 45 seconds before and for 15 seconds after the patient experiences a cardiac symptom. Just like with the holter monitor, a patient is asked to keep a patient diary, provided by the technologist when the device is first connected. The patient is asked to note the time, activity and symptoms he/she experiences with each episode.
With the loop monitor, up to 10 recordings may be stored until the information must be downloaded. The recorder may also be programmed for automatic recording for detecting bradycardia, tachycardia or atrial fibrillation.
If no ECG abnormality is noted, a non-cardiac etiology of the patient’s symptoms can be sought.
In addition to activating the loop monitor when a cardiac symptom is felt, the patient can remove the loop monitor each day if bathing or showering. Afterwards, the two electrodes would be reapplied to the chest with the spare electrodes, as instructed by the technologist.
When ten symptoms are recorded, the patient has the option of sending the stored data over the telephone using the auto attendant feature of this technology which is available 24 hours a day, as instructed by the technologist initially. Instructions are also provided in the patient’s diary.
Alternatively, the patient may bring the recorder directly in to any KMH lab for downloading and subsequent analysis. Once the captured events are transmitted or downloaded, the recorder’s memory is cleared and the loop monitor is ready to continue storing additional events. A written report will be sent to the referring physician within 48 hours upon completion of the test. Referral Procedure Check off “LOOP Monitor” on the KMH Cardiology Requisition Form. Your office or your patient may call to book an appointment (905-855-1860 or 1-877-564-5227). Patients may visit www.kmhlabs.com to find the location nearest them.