Heart Care Center of Northwest Houston
Cardiologists located in Houston, TX & Cypress, TX
Electrocardiography (EKG) technology is the first type of diagnostic test you're likely to have when you have symptoms of heart disease. The cardiologists at Heart Care Center of Northwest Houston use state-of-the-art diagnostics, including EKG, at their offices in Houston and North Cypress, Texas. If you need expert diagnosis and treatment, call the office nearest you today to schedule a consultation or book an appointment online.
EKG Q & A
What is an EKG?
EKG or ECG is short for electrocardiogram. It's a diagnostic technology that creates a readout of the electrical signals in your heart. EKG is the primary tool for assessing heart function.
Undergoing an EKG is a painless procedure during which you lie on an examination table. The technician attaches electrodes to your chest and may put them on other areas like your arms and legs, too.
When the machine is running, it records the information relayed by the electrodes and displays it as lines that make wave-shaped patterns on the computer screen. It's also possible to print out the reading.
What does the EKG reading show?
An EKG reading gives the Heart Care Center of Northwest Houston valuable information about conditions and functions, including:
The EKG reading quickly confirms whether or not you're having a heart attack, so you get the treatment you need straight away. The readings can also determine what sort of damage there is to your heart, as well as showing whether you've suffered a heart attack before.
Oxygen and blood supply
An EKG can illustrate whether you have enough blood flowing through your heart and whether sufficient oxygen is reaching your heart muscle.
Heart rate and rhythm
The EKG records information about your heart rate and rhythm that highlights problems like arrhythmias (irregular heartbeats), tachycardia (heart rate that's too fast), or bradycardia (heart rate that's too slow).
The Heart Care Center of Northwest Houston uses EKG readings to look for evidence of heart enlargement and other defects.
Why would I need an EKG?
An EKG is an accurate, timely, and straightforward method of identifying heart problems. Symptoms of heart trouble that might prompt the Heart Care Center of Northwest Houston to request an EKG include:
- Chest pain
- Shortness of breath
- Dizziness or lightheadedness
- Rapid pulse
- Extreme fatigue
- Inability to exercise
Many patients who visit Heart Care Center of Northwest Houston do so because they've had an abnormal EKG result and are attending a follow-up appointment. If your EKG doesn't pick up the cause of your symptoms, you might need to try ambulatory EKG.
What is ambulatory EKG?
Ambulatory EKG involves using a portable device that you wear at home when a standard in-office EKG doesn't find the source of your heart-related symptoms.
If your symptoms aren't constant, the in-office EKG won't be able to detect the change in electrical activity that could explain what's happening.
You can instead wear a Holter monitor that records the electrical activity in your heart for several days, a cardiac event monitor, which just records your heart's activity when you're experiencing symptoms, or use mobile cardiac telemetry.
Find out more about EKG and the other state-of-the-art diagnostics available at Heart Care Center of Northwest Houston by calling the location nearest you today or book an appointment online.