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What is an electrocardiogram?
How to prepare for an ECG?
What happens during the ECG?
Why is it done?
Are there any limitations of this procedure?
Mon,22 Nov 2004 05:30:00 +0530
Written by : DoctorNDTV Team
Checked by :
  • What is an electrocardiogram?
    What is an electrocardiogram?
    Mon,22 Nov 2004 05:30:00
    An electrocardiogram, also called an ECG, is a record of the electrical activity of the heart. The electrical impulses are recorded by placing leads on different parts of the body. It is a diagnostic procedure to detect any abnormality of rhythm or disease of the heart.
  • How to prepare for an ECG?
    How to prepare for an ECG?
    Mon,22 Nov 2004 05:30:00
    No special preparation is necessary unless special instructions are given by the doctor. Loose clothes are advisable as the electrodes have to be placed on the limbs and the chest.
  • What happens during the ECG?
    What happens during the ECG?
    Mon,22 Nov 2004 05:30:00
    It is a simple, painless procedure. Small disks or suction cups, made of metal or plastic, are attached to the chest, wrists, and ankles. The disks have electrodes which are connected to a machine that records electrical impulses of the heart and gives a tracing on paper. Any abnormalities of the heart’s electrical activity at rest, can be diagnosed easily by reading the paper tracing. A continuous recording of the ECG over 24 to 48 hours during normal activity can be done by a lightweight portable machine called a Holter monitor.
  • Why is it done?
    Why is it done?
    Mon,22 Nov 2004 05:30:00
    It is useful in detecting a heart attack, angina, disorders of heart rhythm (arrhythmias) like heart block, fibrillation (very fast abnormal heart rhythm) or tachycardia (fast heart beat), etc.
  • Are there any limitations of this procedure?
    Are there any limitations of this procedure?
    Mon,22 Nov 2004 05:30:00
    There are no obvious risks. But sometimes the ECG may not show any abnormality in the early stages of a heart problem. So it may give a false negative report of the ECG.

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