Scenario: A 53-year-old male arrived at the mentally ill/chemically addicted unit with acute alcohol withdrawal. His electrocardiogram (ECG) showed the cardiac rhythm below. The patient was a recovering alcoholic but a week earlier had left his family and checked into a motel to drink alcohol. He had stopped eating and had been drinking continuously when he noticed chest palpitations and shortness of breath the day before Thanksgiving. However, he delayed going to the hospital until after Thanksgiving because he wanted to watch the football games. Before the diagnosis of alcoholism 2 years earlier, the business executive had no medical issues; in fact, he had been very healthy and had run marathons.

The cardiac rhythm is atrial fibrillation at 84/min. The ECG strip carries an “EASI” label indicating that the monitoring system is using 5 electrodes in a unique configuration to derive continuous 12-lead...

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