Electrocardiogram (EKG) offers a fast, painless, accurate way of assessing how well your heart's working. If you have symptoms of a heart condition, fellowship-trained cardiologists A. Adnan Aslam, MD, FACC, FSCAI, and Roy Norman, DO, of Northwest Houston Heart Center have cutting-edge EKG facilities at their offices in Tomball, Cypress, Magnolia, and The Woodlands, Texas. To learn more about how EKGs can help you, call your nearest office or book an appointment online today.
An EKG (electrocardiogram) is one of the fastest, simplest tests for evaluating your heart.
To perform an EKG, your provider at Northwest Houston Heart Center places small plastic patches on your chest, arms, and legs that contain electrodes. They connect the electrodes to the EKG machine, which measures the electrical activity in your heart.
Your provider interprets the readout to gain valuable information about how well your heart is working.
You might need an EKG if you're experiencing symptoms that could be due to a heart problem, such as:
In addition to its usefulness as a diagnostic tool, EKG is also helpful in monitoring your heart health after you start a course of treatment.
EKGs can detect whether you're having a heart attack or if you've had a heart attack in the past. They're also able to provide information that can indicate you have problems like:
Symptoms for these conditions are often similar, but the treatment can vary. EKG readings provide vital information that ensures you get the correct care.
An EKG simply requires you to have 12 electrodes attached to your body for a short time. EKGs are painless and noninvasive – you won't even feel the electricity from the electrodes. The test takes around 10 minutes and doesn't require any preparation.
After the EKG, your provider at Northwest Houston Heart Center reviews the results and explains them to you. If you have an abnormal EKG, you may need to undergo further tests, such as a cardiac PET (positron emission tomography) scan or an echocardiogram (ultrasound of your heart).
If there's no apparent abnormality in your EKG, you might need more specialized forms of testing using the same technology. Stress testing involves exercising (or taking medication that simulates the effects of exercise) while wearing the electrodes. This type of EKG may detect problems that aren't apparent when you're resting.
Holter and event monitors are portable EKG devices that record your heart's activity over a longer period. If your symptoms come and go, these can be useful ways of capturing the abnormal heart activity as it occurs.
To find out more about EKG and take advantage of Northwest Houston Heart Center's on-site facilities, call the office closest to you today or book an appointment online.