ENG | Diagnostics Centre

An Electrocardiogram, commonly known as an ECG or EKG, is a vital tool in cardiology that measures the electrical activity of the heart. This blog explores the significance of ECG, its types, interpretation, and its role in healthcare.

Introduction to ECG (Electrocardiogram)

An ECG is a non-invasive test that records the electrical impulses generated by the heart as it beats. It provides valuable information about the heart’s rhythm, rate, and overall electrical activity.

Purpose and Importance of ECG

ECG is used to detect and diagnose various heart conditions, including arrhythmias, heart attacks, heart defects, and abnormal heart rhythms. It helps healthcare professionals assess cardiac health and formulate appropriate treatment plans.

How Does an ECG Work?

During an ECG, electrodes are placed on the skin, usually on the chest, arms, and legs. These electrodes detect the electrical signals produced by the heart and transmit them to a machine, which creates a graphical representation of the heart’s activity.

Types of ECG Tests

  1. Resting ECG: Done while the patient is at rest, providing a baseline assessment of heart function.
  2. Stress ECG (Exercise ECG): Measures heart activity during physical exertion, helping diagnose coronary artery disease and assess cardiac function under stress.
  3. Holter Monitor: A portable device worn for 24 to 48 hours to monitor continuous ECG activity, useful for detecting intermittent arrhythmias.
  4. Event Monitor: Similar to a Holter monitor but worn for longer durations, recording ECG when triggered by symptoms.

Interpretation of ECG Results

Healthcare professionals analyze ECG patterns to identify abnormalities such as irregular heartbeats, heart muscle damage, conduction disorders, and electrolyte imbalances.

Common Uses of ECG in Healthcare

  • Diagnosing heart rhythm disorders (arrhythmias)
  • Evaluating symptoms like chest pain, palpitations, dizziness, and shortness of breath
  • Monitoring heart function during and after cardiac procedures
  • Assessing the effects of medications on cardiac health
  • Screening for heart conditions in individuals at risk

Benefits and Limitations of ECG

Benefits include non-invasiveness, rapid results, and widespread availability. Limitations include the inability to detect all heart conditions and the need for additional tests for comprehensive cardiac evaluation.

ECG Procedure and Preparation

The ECG procedure is painless and simple, requiring no special preparation. Patients may be asked to avoid oily or greasy skin products that could interfere with electrode placement. At K Health Diagnostics, the ECG process is simple, painless, and doesn’t require any prior preparation. Patients should be advised to stay away from greasy or oily skin products as these may cause issues with the electrode implantation.

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