1. WHAT IS AN ECHOCARDIOGRAM?
The Echocardiogram uses sound waves to produce images of your heart. This will provide information about its size, shape, capacity, and if there are abnormalities.
Your doctor may recommend this test for the following reasons:
• If you experience chest pain, shortness of breath, palpitations or dizziness
• You have a family history of are at risk of heart conditions
• Screening and surveillance in patients with hypertension, known valvular dysfunction, suspected pulmonary hypertension, family history of cardiomyopathy, exposure to cardiotoxic drugs (Clozapine, some chemotherapeutic agents)
• Cardiac Murmurs
• Evaluation of known or suspected adult congenital heart disease
• Physical signs of heart failure
The test takes 30 minutes to 1 hour. You will need to remove your clothes above your waist, put on a gown then lie down on the bed. Your skin will be cleaned with some abrasive paper and alcohol wipes. To ensure good contact between your skin and the probe, some electrodes and ultrasound gel are placed at several different sites on your
The electrodes are placed on your chest to monitor your heart. You may develop a skin irritation from the placement of the electrodes or the gel. Please advise the cardiac sonographer if you are allergic to any tape or adhesives.
The cardiac sonographer will then perform an echo using an ultrasound machine. The probe is moved around your chest to take images of your heart. Sometimes images may be difficult to obtain and may require additional pressure causing discomfort.
You may be asked to hold your breath or lie on your side for a short period of time. The results will be sent to your referring doctor. Please organize an appointment with your doctor.