Case studies

Common causes of ST elevation

Atifur Rahman, JILANI LATONA



ST elevation on an ECG can indicate acute ST elevation myocardial infarction (STEMI) and this should always be considered first. However, there are several other conditions that also elevate the ST segment and other features must be used to distinguish between them.

Key Points

  • The 12-lead ECG is an integral part of the diagnostic work up of a patient with acute chest pain.
  • ST elevation in a 12-lead ECG is an important feature in the diagnosis and treatment of acute myocardial infarction (AMI).
  • Several other clinical conditions can result in ST elevation.
  • At times, distinguishing between ST elevation AMI (STEMI) from non-ischaemic causes of elevation of the ST segment is difficult.
  • STEMI is typically con ned to a vascular territory and has a convex upward shape.

    Picture credit: © Mhelm3011/
    Model used for illustrative purposes only