Echocardiogram Testing for Heart Health Conditions
The power of ultrasound has come a long way since its use by the Navy in WWII in detecting enemy submarines. Advancements in technology have opened the door for applications in health and wellness. An echocardiogram is an
How Does an Echocardiogram Work?
An echocardiogram uses ultrasound technology to create a picture of the heart. During an echocardiogram, electrodes are attached to your bare chest so that an electrocardiogram (EKG or ECG) can record cardiac events during the procedure. A transducer attached to the ultrasound screen is coated in a clear gel and pressed against various parts of your chest. The transducer sends harmless ultrasound waves into your body. When the waves encounter your heart, they bounce back to the transducer. The ultrasound machine can then interpret the waves into a 2-d image of your heart.
What Information can an Echocardiogram Provide?
Because the echocardiogram can produce a cross-sectional view of the heart, it's possible for a doctor to examine all parts of the heart including valves, chambers, and major blood vessels. An echocardiogram can also incorporate a Doppler examination, which is a special part of the ultrasound that can assess the flow of blood into and out of the heart.