The basic principles of analogue and digital computers are reviewed and their application is described for the beat-to-beat analysis of the electrocardiogram using the AZTEC data reduction programme, for on-line haemodynamic analyses in the cardiac catheterization laboratory, coronary care unit, or postoperative ward, and for the clinical history and physical examination of the patient. The role of the computer in the management of cardiovascular disease is defined and its superiority in the collection and manipulation of complex data is emphasized. Its use in sparing staff the tedium of routine analyses of data will amply repay the initial cost of its installation.
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