PROCEDURES


ECG and Stress ECG

Overview

An electrocardiogram is an entirely painless, non-invasive test designed to measure the heart’s electrical signals. ECG monitors are standard medical equipment commonly used in hospitals, clinics, ambulances and doctors’ offices.

Why it’s performed

An ECG and stress (exercise-induced) ECG is done to check for abnormal heart rhythms, a condition called heart arrhythmia. This is also an effective way of diagnosing coronary artery disease that occurs from blocked coronary arteries.

An ECG usually is part of a follow-up after inserting a pacemaker or recovering from a heart attack.

Apart from this, an ECG is used to determine the cause of:

  • Heart flutter
  • Heart palpitations
  • Difficulty breathing
  • Deep chest pain
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Preparation

Generally, no preparation is required for an electrocardiogram. Before the test, Dr Abelson will discuss medication and supplements taken. These medicines may affect the outcome of the ECG. An ECG or stress ECG can take place in the doctor’s rooms or hospital.

Procedure

We attach twelve electrodes to the chest and limbs. The electrodes have patches that stick to the skin. Wires travel from these electrodes to a monitor. These instruments are responsible for measuring the heart’s electrical signals. The data from this process is transferred to a monitor shown as waves on a computer screen.

An exercise-induced (ECG) test is similarly done. However, treadmill walking or running and stationary bike riding puts the heart under pressure. The results are delivered in the same way as a standard ECG.

Recovery

An ECG is over in a matter of minutes. There is no recovery time involved for this quick, in-office test. Usually, routine activities can be continued after the test. A routine ECG reveals the following:

  • Heart rate and rhythm
  • Blood flow to the heart
  • An enlarged heart
  • Cause of chest pain or angina
  • Additional heart abnormalities (Defects in the heart’s chambers or walls)

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FAQ


1Can you move during a standard ECG?
You must remain still during a normal ECG. Try not to move, shiver or talk during an ECG. When this occurs, the results of the test are disrupted.
2When do you receive the results of the ECG?
You receive the results of the procedure on the same day of the test. If the results turn out unfavourable, we will have to conduct another test or perform a series of diagnostic tests.
3Will an ECG indicate a blocked artery?
When using an ECG, diagnosing a blocked artery further from the heart is mostly ineffective. An ultrasound is preferably a better option for diagnosing an obstructed artery. A carotid ultrasound specifically diagnoses blockages in the arteries of the neck.

“FIRST, DO NO HARM.”