An electrocardiogram records the electrical signals in your heart. It's a common test used to detect heart problems and monitor the heart's status in many situations. Electrocardiograms — also called ECGs or EKGs — are often done in a doctor's office, a clinic or a hospital room. Now, we can perform an ECG at your home with the same accuracy. Our standard resting 12-lead ECG is a non-invasive, painless heart function test.
Electrocardiography is the process of producing an electrocardiogram (ECG or EKG), a graph of voltage versus time, of the electrical activity of the heart using electrodes placed on the skin. These electrodes detect the small electrical changes that are a consequence of cardiac muscle depolarization followed by repolarization during each cardiac cycle (heartbeat). Changes in the normal ECG pattern occur in numerous cardiac abnormalities, including cardiac rhythm disturbances (such as atrial fibrillation and ventricular tachycardia), inadequate coronary artery blood flow (such as myocardial ischemia and myocardial infarction), and electrolyte disturbances (such as hypokalemia and hyperkalemia).
We use a conventional 12-lead ECG, ten electrodes are placed on the patient’s limbs and on the surface of the chest. The overall magnitude of the heart’s electrical potential is then measured from twelve different angles (“leads”) and is recorded over a period of time (usually ten seconds). In this way, the overall magnitude and direction of the heart’s electrical depolarization is captured at each moment throughout the cardiac cycle.
An ECG is a quick, safe and painless test. No electricity is put into your body while it’s carried out.
There may be some slight discomfort when the electrodes are removed from your skin – similar to removing a sticking plaster – and some people may develop a mild rash where the electrodes were attached.
An exercise ECG is performed under controlled conditions. The person carrying out the test will carefully monitor you, and they’ll stop the test if you experience any symptoms or start to feel unwell.
We are using Welch Allyn CardioPerfect Workstation with PC-Based 12-Lead Resting Electrocardiograph with automatic ECG interpretation.
No special preparation is needed.
An ECG is often used alongside other tests to help diagnose and monitor conditions affecting the heart.
It can be used to investigate symptoms of a possible heart problem, such as chest pain, palpitations (suddenly noticeable heartbeats), dizziness and shortness of breath.
An ECG can help detect:
A series of ECGs can also be taken over time to monitor a person already diagnosed with a heart condition or taking medication known to potentially affect the heart.
The functional test results are NOT to be interpreted as a "stand-alone" test. The test results have to be interpreted after correlating with suitable clinical findings and additional supplemental tests/information. Your healthcare providers will explain the meaning of your tests results, based on the overall clinical scenario.
Certain medications that you may be currently taking may influence the outcome of the test. Hence, it is important to inform your healthcare provider of the complete list of medications (including any herbal supplements) you are currently taking. This will help the healthcare provider interpret your test results more accurately and avoid unnecessary chances of a misdiagnosis.
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