What Is It?
The electrocardiogram is a simple and painless test that detects your heart’s activity and records it to examine cardiovascular health. A technician will attach up to 12 electrodes on the skin’s surface to the chest, arms, and legs. Each electrode is connected by wires that is attached to a machine that records the electrical activity of your heart. The SA node (sinoatrial), which is located in the right atrium, sends electrical signals to begin a new heartbeat ranging from 60 to 100 beats per minute.This signal is transferred through the right and left atria, causing it to contract and move the blood into the heart’s lower chambers known as the ventricles. This electrical signal translates on the EKG report as the P wave. The same electrical signal continues to travel through the body and registers on the EKG as Q waves, which is what the vascular doctors review at the conclusion of the EKG.
What To Expect
The EKG is performed as an outpatient test and results are given right away. Electrodes are applied by sticking them directly to the body. The test itself is completely painless, therefore anesthesia is not necessary. If the patient experiences any discomfort, it is during the removal of the electrodes when we detach them from the application areas. Some patients have experienced minor breakouts or a rash from the application sites, but they typically go away on their own within a couple of days.
Dynamic EKG monitors display the heart rate, but the activity can also be determined from a printed tracing by using their preferred method. Essentially, the doctor will review the EKG results and use a simple equation to figure out the heart beats per minute and determine its regularity based on the intervals’ consistency.
The vascular specialists at Venocure will go over the EKG results with the patients. If the EKG results come back irregular, our vascular doctors will discuss treatment options with you.