A Review of Sensitivity, Specificity, and Likelihood Ratios: Evaluating the Utility of the Electrocardiogram as a Screening Tool in Hypertrophic Cardiomyopathy

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Abstract

Appropriate interpretation of a screening test's validity poses a challenge to the clinician. The purpose of this review is to revisit the terms sensitivity, specificity, likelihood ratio, and pre- and posttest probability and their application to the clinical setting. For illustration, we use a recently published article in the American Journal of Cardiology that investigates the false negative rate of electrocardiograms in athletic preparticipation screening for hypertrophic cardiomyopathy.

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