Intraoperative Pulmonary Embolism: A Case Report Emphasizing the Utility of Electrocardiogram

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Abstract

Pulmonary embolism (PE) is an important cause of perioperative morbidity and mortality. In patients with suspected PE, electrocardiogram (ECG) alone is thought to have a limited utility due to its low sensitivity and specificity. This case report describes a patient with intraoperative PE presenting with hypotension and hypoxemia for whom the ECG finding of SIQIIITIII was key in identifying acute cor pulmonale. The ECG was paramount in our decision to acquire computed tomography angiography to confirm the diagnosis, reinforcing its invaluable role in early detection of intraoperative PE.

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