The best EKG apps for the iPhone

The ECG has been an integral part of medical practice for decades. It gives us the data on which we base decisions to deliver potentially life saving shocks or to activate a cath lab. It also provides valuable data for patients presenting with everything from dizziness to shortness of breath. Given it’s wide role in medicine, it is one of the skills taught to all medical students regardless of career path.

Over the past few weeks, iMedicalApps has reviewed a range of ECG apps available for the iPhone and iPod Touch. These applications were evaluated based on their content, ease of use and overall benefit to practicing physicians. Covered below is a brief summary of each application including our choice for which among is the best app for ECG’s.

One point to note is that some of the apps were only designed for a specific purpose, which they may do very well. That being said, they may not offer a comprehensive level of detail which is required by physicians when it comes to the ECG.

Having comprehensively used these apps over a number of weeks, it has become clear that there are three apps that are ideal for use by practicing physicians and medical students alike. These are ECG Guide by QxMD, Instant ECG by iAnesthesia and ECG Notes by Skyscape. Collectively these apps all contained vast amounts of information which was easily accessible.

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Instant ECG and ECG Guide are perhaps more useful for junior professionals who are looking for a useful learning resource as both contain a wide range of material including sample ECG’s, rhythm interpretation, clinical correlations and a range of quizzes to test oneself. This combined with their cheap price mean they are essential purchases for the physician looking for an ECG app. ECG Notes by Skyscape is the most comprehensive app on the subject and useful for those who already have a solid understanding of common pathologies present on ECGs. Its depth of detail is suitable for those on in cardiology programs as a quick reference guide. It is, unfortunately, let down by its occasionally frustrating user interface and its price. At $24.99, it is hard to compete with quality $0.99 apps such as ECG Guide and Instant ECG mentioned previously. Its reference book nature means that it is not suitable for beginners to ECGs. These users are directed to ECG Guide or Instant ECG.

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Ultimately ECG Guide and Instant ECG are both very similar apps with minor differences. Both apps are very intuitive to use and have minimal drawbacks.  Instant ECG has a stronger focus on teaching users about ECGs and has a wider range of quizzes, complete 12 sample ECG rhythms in movie form and a useful quick reference section. However, ECG Guide contains more information related to reading and interpreting ECGs. It has a wider range of samples and the ‘ECG Book’ used to teach is well written, easy to understand and concise – all features which are useful to a wide range of healthcare professionals. On the basis of this, ECG Guide by QxMD is recommended as the best ECG app currently available.

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Other notable ECG apps include ECG i-Pocketcards, ECG Rhythms and Easy ECG. Each of these apps have their strong points and will appeal to a different range of medical professionals. For example Easy ECG has great uses amongst EMTs who are looking for a simple app that will help them diagnose ECG rhythms in a quick and easy manner. Similarly ECG i-Pocketcards is great for use by medical students looking for an app that will help them recap key ECG concepts whilst ECG Rhythms will develop their ECG interpretation skills in advance of hitting the wards.

So in rank order, the top three:

1) ECG Guide By QxMD
01

  • Review here
  • Cost $0.99

2) Instant ECG by iAnesthesia
09

  • Review here
  • Cost $0.99

3) ECG Notes by Skyscape
10

  • Review here
  • Cost $24.99

Notable Mentions:


ECG i-Pocketcards by Borm Bruckmeier Publishing

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  • Review here
  • Cost $3.99

ECG Rhythms by Anesoft12

  • Review here
  • Cost $4.99

Easy ECG by Cody Blount13

  • Review here
  • Cost $1.99

Author:

Tom Lewis

Editor, iMedicalApps.com

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2 Responses to The best EKG apps for the iPhone

  1. Hussein Geran May 21, 2013 at 11:37 pm #

    Very helpful review and thanks for the extra screenshots!

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