• 1 Hospital Segamat


Phasic ECG voltage changes or electrical alternans is a well-described ECG changes seen in the pericardial effusion and cardiac tamponade. Popular as once believed, this ECG features are no longer considered pathognomonic for pericardial effusion and cardiac tamponade. Electric alternans is observed in pneumothorax especially left-sided pneumothorax. This is a case of a 41-year-old man who presented with chest pain and breathlessness to the emergency department. Assessment in the emergency unit revealed an obvious distress man with a respiratory rate of 60 breaths/min with cyanosis There were generalised rhonchi and prolonged expiratory breath sound appreciated. Chest X-ray (CXR) was done and diagnosed to have left tension pneumothorax. Initial electrocardiogram (ECG) showed electrical alternans in all leads. He was intubated for respiratory distress followed by chest tube insertion. His initial ECG findings resolved after treatment of the tension pneumothorax. Doctors need to evaluate the cardiac findings along with respiratory findings.