An electrocardiogram (likewise called EKG or ECG) is a test that tapes the electrical activity of your heart through small electrode patches attached to the skin of your chest, arms, and legs. An EKG might be part of a routine physical exam or it might be made use of as a test for heart disease. An EKG can be made use of to even more investigate symptoms associated with heart problems.
Your doctor will identify heart failure based on your medical and family histories, a physical exam, and test outcomes. The signs and symptoms of heart failure likewise prevail in other conditions. Therefore, your doctor will:
- Find out whether you have a disease or condition that can cause heart failure, such as coronary heart disease (CHD), high blood pressure, or diabetes
- Rule out other causes of your symptoms
- Find any damage to your heart and examine how well your heart pumps blood
Early medical diagnosis and treatment can help individuals who have heart failure live longer, more active lives.
Medical and Family Histories
Your doctor will ask whether you or others in your family have or have actually had a disease or condition that can trigger heart failure.
Your doctor likewise will inquire about your symptoms. She or he will want to know which symptoms you have, when they occur, how long you’ve had them, and how severe they are. Your responses will help reveal whether and just how much your symptoms limit your day-to-day routine.
Throughout the physical examination, your doctor will:
- Pay attention to your heart for noises that aren’t regular
- Listen to your lungs for the noises of additional fluid accumulation
- Try to find swelling in your ankles, feet, legs, abdominal area, and the veins in your neck
No single test can detect heart failure. If you have signs and symptoms of heart failure, your doctor may advise one or more tests.
Your doctor also might refer you to a cardiologist. A cardiologist is a doctor who specializes in detecting and dealing with heart diseases and conditions.
An EKG is a simple, pain-free test that discovers and tapes the heart’s electrical activity. The test shows how quick your heart is beating and its rhythm (constant or irregular). An EKG likewise records the strength and timing of electrical signals as they go through your heart.
An EKG might show whether the walls in your heart’s pumping chambers are thicker than normal. Thicker walls can make it harder for your heart to pump blood. An EKG likewise can show signs of a previous or current cardiac arrest.
What Does an EKG Show About Heart Failure
An EKG is done to:
- Check the heart’s electrical activity.
- Discover the reason for unexplained chest pain or pressure. This could be brought on by a heart attack, swelling of the sac surrounding the heart (pericarditis), or angina.
- Discover the cause of symptoms of heart disease. Symptoms include shortness of breath, lightheadedness, fainting, and heart beats that are rapid and irregular (palpitations).
- Find out if the walls of the heart chambers are too thick.
- Check how well medications are working and see if they are triggering side effects that afflict the heart.
- Examine how well mechanical gadgets that are implanted in the heart, such as pacemakers, are working. These devices assist to control the heartbeat.
- Examine the health of the heart when other illness or conditions are present. These include high blood pressure, high cholesterol, cigarette smoking, diabetes, and a household history of early heart disease.
How to Prepare for EKG after Heart Failure
Make certain to inform your doctor about all the medicines you take, even over-the-counter ones. Many medicines can alter the results of this test.
If you take heart medicines, your doctor will tell you the best ways to take your medicines before you have this test.
Get rid of all jewelry from your neck, arms, and wrists. Men are generally bare-chested during the test. Women might commonly use a bra, T-shirt, or dress. You will be given a cloth or paper covering to utilize during the test. Doctor may explain to you what does an EKG show about heart failure.
Heart Failure: EKG Procedure
You might get an EKG as part of a physical examination. This might be done at your health specialist’s workplace or throughout a series of tests at a health center or clinic. EKG devices is often portable. This indicates the test can be done almost anywhere. If you remain in the hospital, your heart may be regularly monitored by an EKG system.
During an EKG:
- You will lie on a bed or table. Certain areas of your arms, legs, and chest will be cleaned and may be shaved. This offers a clean, smooth surface to attach the electrodes.
- A number of electrodes are connected to the skin camera.gif on each arm and leg and on your chest.
- These are connected to a machine that traces your heart activity onto a paper. If an older machine is made use of, the electrodes may be moved at different times throughout the test. This measures your heart’s electrical activity from different put on your chest.
- You will be asked to lie really still and breathe typically throughout the test. Often you might be asked to hold your breath. You should not talk throughout the test.
- After the test, the electrode paste is wiped off.
The test usually takes 5 to 10 minutes.
Feeling, Risks and Results
The electrodes may feel cool when they are placed on your chest. If you have a great deal of hair on your chest, a little area might need to be shaved to put the electrodes on. When the electrodes are taken off, they may pull your skin a little.
An EKG is a completely safe test. In many cases, there is no reason that you need to not have the ability to get an EKG.
The electrodes are made use of to transfer an image of your heart’s electrical activity to the tracing on paper. No electrical power travels through your body from the device, and there is no risk of electrical shock.
An electrocardiogram (EKG or ECG) is a test that checks for problems with the electrical activity of your heart. An EKG shows the heart’s electrical activity as line tracings on paper. The spikes and dips in the line tracings are called waves.
The EKG is read by a doctor, such as an internist, household medication doctor, electrophysiologist, cardiologist, anesthesiologist, or specialist. The doctor will look at the pattern of spikes and dips on your EKG to inspect the electrical activity in different parts of your heart. The spikes and dips are organized into different sections that demonstrate how your heart is working.
Electrocardiogram (EKG or ECG) results
|The heart beats in a regular rhythm, usually between 60 and 100 beats per minute.
|The tracing looks OK.
|The heart beats very slow (such as less than 60 beats per minute).
The heart beats very fast (such as more than 100 beats per minute).
The heart rhythm is not regular.
|The tracing does not look normal.