Electrocardiogram (ECG)

An electrocardiogram records the electrical signals in your heart. 

An electrocardiogram is a painless, test that records the electrical signals in your heart.  It’s a safe test for all ages. 

Why is it done?

To diagnose certain conditions such as:

  • Atrial Fibrillation
  • Enlarged Heart
  • Coronary artery disease (blockages of arteries of heart muscle)
  • Other heart rhythm problems

How to prepare?

No special preparations are necessary for a standard electrocardiogram. 

What to expect:

  • You may be asked to change into a gown.
  • If you have hair on the parts of your body where the electrodes will be placed, the technician may shave the hair so that the patches stick.
  • During an ECG, up to 12 sensors (electrodes) will be attached to your chest and limbs. The electrodes are sticky patches with wires that connect to a monitor. 
  • A computer records the information and displays it as waves on a monitor or on paper.
  • You can breathe normally during the test, but you will need to lie still.
  •  A standard ECG takes a few minutes.

Your doctor may discuss your results with you the same day as your electrocardiogram

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