The Virtual Cardiology Laboratory




Enter the Lab


Virtual Cardiology Lab Introduction and Help


Welcome to the Virtual Cardiology Lab. The focus of this lab is on heritable diseases of the heart. You are cast here as a virtual intern to accompany a doctor examining three different patients. Each patient is examined, using more than one diagnostic tool, and at each stage, the doctor will invite you to examine the patient yourself and ask for your opinion.

Making a diagnosis is, in many respects, like detective work. You gather clues using a variety of techniques and form a coherent picture, taking into account both the power and the limitations of the techniques used and building on current knowledge of diseases and their symptoms. Since we assume you are a student and not a doctor, we have provided you with information to help familiarize you with basic facts about the heart and heart diseases, medical terminology, and available diagnostic tools. This information can be found in the "Basic Cardiology Guide" and "Diagnostic Tools Guide" sections, both of which are available any time by clicking on their respective tabs above this window.

Learning Objectives

  • Symptoms of a selection of heart diseases, to serve as examples of what kinds of things can go wrong with the heart. How are symptoms detected and why?

  • Tools and techniques used for diagnosis. What can the different techniques detect and how do they work?

  • Principles of pedigree analysis.

Using the Virtual Lab

The lab interface is divided into two main areas: the interactive window on the left and the lab notebook on the right, where this page is displayed. Within the interactive window, you will be prompted by text in the white tip window. As you progress, the lab notebook window will automatically update with detailed information about the current step. If a question is asked, it will be displayed here.

Icons below the tip window indicate the current section (highlighted in white) and completed sections (in light blue). To restart a section, click on any of these icons.

At any time during the lab, you can click the tabs above. The Patient tab will give you general information about your patient (A, B, or C) as well as the results from each examination as you complete each section. The Quiz tab provides you with a summary of your quiz results. The Cardiology Guide tab includes background information, a glossary of terms, and an encyclopedia of terms. The Diagnostic Tools Guide tab includes information on the tools used in this lab. Clicking the Notebook tab will take you back to the current section information.