We used a phase plane plots method (a plot of voltage [V(t)] vs rate of change of voltage [dV/dt]) derived from nonlinear dynamics to transform a sinus rhythm strip into a geometric form. The geometric form thus obtained detects variations in the ECG over time and therefore may aid in identifying patterns of vulnerability to ventricular fibrillation (VF). The trajectories of consecutive ventricular depolarizations and repolarizations of sinus rhythm in dogs that evolve to VF showed characteristic differential band thickening (inhomogeneities) that were absent in the dogs that did not develop VF. This method of analysis can be a useful complementary tool to detect cardiac electrical instability, and with simple hardware, can easily be displayed in real time.
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