If you’re experiencing symptoms of a heart attack or you have any health problems that could be caused by heart dysfunction, having an EKG or electrocardiogram is one of the best ways to check. At Levine Heart & Wellness, Ronald Levine, MD, and Ronald Caputo, MD, FACC, FSCAI, are experienced cardiologists who use EKG testing to diagnose a variety of cardiovascular conditions and help monitor patients who have heart problems. If you have any concerns about your heart health, call the Naples, Florida, office today to schedule a consultation or book an appointment online.
An EKG, also often referred to as ECG, is shorthand for electrocardiogram, a technology that your practitioner at Vestibular Diagnostics uses to check the functioning of your heart.
The EKG measures the electrical activity in your heart via a series of electrodes, which stick onto your skin over your heart, and often at the site of major blood vessels around your body as well.
The EKG displays the signals it receives from the electrodes as a series of waves on a computer screen, which your physician uses to identify any dysfunction in the heart.
An EKG reading is a valuable tool for diagnosing both emergency heart problems and the warning signs of dysfunction:
The EKG reading provides an immediate picture of whether the heart is functioning normally when you’re experiencing chest pain or any other symptoms of a heart attack. The EKG reading can also show which part of the heart is affected and whether there’s any damage from previous heart attacks.
Your physician can check your heart rate simply by feeling your pulse, usually in the wrist, and measuring the beats per minute. However, in some cases, the pulse may be too faint, or they may need more detailed information about your heart rate, which an EKG provides.
An EKG shows up problems such as:
An EKG can also identify whether you have a healthy quantity of blood flowing into and out of your heart and if there’s enough oxygen getting to the heart.
Some people are born with structural abnormalities known as congenital heart conditions. They may not be aware of these abnormalities, but an EKG can detect any defects in the heart.
You might have an EKG as part of your annual physical or routine health check, just to make sure there are no signs of dysfunction. You would also need an EKG if you were experiencing symptoms such as:
If your symptoms aren’t constant, you may need to wear a portable EKG machine like a Holter monitor or a cardiac event monitor.
These machines record your heart for longer periods or activate when you’re experiencing symptoms so your physician can see what’s happening during the critical period.
You may also need to undergo electromyography, or EMG, which is another diagnostic technique used for recording electrical activity in your muscles.
If you’re concerned about your heart or have any symptoms of heart problems, call Levine Heart & Wellness today or book an appointment online.