Today’s A – Z Challenge post is brought to you by the letter “Q”

A to Z ChallengeI am so excited to take part in this, my second, A – Z Challenge!  Last year I did the challenge using “recipes” as my inspiration.  Well, this year I’m going to draw on my nursing background and use “parts of the human body” as my inspiration!  Hmmm…a part of the body that starts with “Q”, “X” or “Z”….

It should be a lot of fun and I’m looking forward to seeing how everyone interprets the Challenge!

After the abundance of P’s I have reached a “Q”drought!!  I could really only think of one part of the body that starts with the letter “Q” and that is the Quadriceps muscle.  Because I explained muscles in my “M” post I felt it would be repetitious to mention something muscle related again.

However, there is something else that starts with “Q”, and well I suppose, not technically a part of the anatomy of the human body, it is the name of something within the human body that is necessary to our survival.  So, without further ado,  “Q”  is for QRS Complex:  

A - Z Challenge

Image #1 (from Wikipedia)

If you have ever been in an Emergency Department, an Intensive Care Unit, or a Cardiac Unit or had an electrocardiogram (ECG also known as an EKG) then you may well have seen a QRS Complex.

The QRS complex is a name for the combination of three of the graphical deflections seen on a typical ECG.

It is usually the central and most visually obvious part of the tracing. It corresponds to the depolarization*(see below) of the right and left ventricles of the human heart.

Typically an ECG has five deflections, arbitrarily named “P” to “T” waves. The Q, R, and S waves occur in rapid succession, do not all appear in all leads, and reflect a single event, and thus are usually considered together.

If you refer to image #1 above, and follow along, you will see that a Q wave is any downward deflection after the P wave. An R wave follows the Q as an upward deflection, and the S wave is any downward deflection after the R wave.   This is what comprises the QRS complex.

*Depolarization – With every beat, the heart is depolarized to trigger its contraction. This electrical activity is transmitted throughout the body and can be picked up on the skin. This is the principle behind the ECG.

The information contained in this post was obtained from Cardiovascular Physiology Concepts, NCBI Bookshelf, and Wikipedia.


  1. Great post!! The letter “Q” would be a tough one and as always you have taught me something new :)

  2. Wow, this is a great ‘Q’ post!! I love the explanation and the little active wave going through the post. Hope we all look as regular as he, at our next ECG!!!
    Kathy at Oak Lawn Images

  3. Patricia says:

    Got to hand it to you, what a great “Q” post. I spent time thinking before I clicked on your site, trying to figure out something that would apply and was lost! You not only have one, but Two!! Love the ECG moving strip. Like Kathy said, hope mine looks that good!! Only 9 letters to go!!!
    Patricia, Sugar & Spice & All Things ? Nice

    • Thanks Pat…Q is a tough one…hey, it’s not fair that the difficult letters are near the end when your brain is ready to explode!! lol

  4. I have a secret passion for learning the scientific terms for all the parts of the human Body. Unfortunately I’ve forgotten much of what I’ve learned so your a to z posts are a great refresher course.
    And thanks for visiting my blog today :)

    • I do too Michelle, I think the human body is a pretty fascinating organism that holds many interesting facts. Thanks for visiting and I hope you enjoy the rest of the Challenge.

  5. Ooof, I will have to come back to this one again in order to fully grasp it.

    • I understand, it really is a description you need to read a few times to understand. Thanks for visiting and I hope you enjoy the rest of the challenge.

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