The electrocardiogram (ECG or EKG) is a diagnostic tool that is routinely used to assess the electrical and muscular functions of the heart.
The heart is a two stage electrical pump and the heart’s electrical activity can be measured by electrodes placed on the skin. The electrocardiogram can measure the rate and rhythm of the heartbeat, as well as provide indirect evidence of blood flow to the heart muscle.
ECG Basics :
An ECG is often used alongside other tests to help diagnose and monitor conditions affecting the heart.
It can be used to investigate symptoms of a possible heart problem, such as chest pain, suddenly noticeable heartbeats (palpitations), dizziness and shortness of breath.
During an Arrhythmia, the heart can beat too fast, too slow, or with an irregular rhythm. A heartbeat that is too fast is called Tachycardia. A heartbeat that is too slow is called Bradycardia.
Coronary heart disease (CHD) is the leading cause of death in the United States for men and women. Coronary heart disease is caused by the buildup of plaque in the arteries to your heart. This may also be called hardening of the arteries.
Most Heart Attacks are caused by a blood clot that blocks one of the coronary arteries. The coronary arteries bring blood and oxygen to the heart. If the blood flow is blocked, the heart is starved of oxygen and heart cells die.
Cardiomyopathy is disease in which the heart muscle becomes weakened, stretched, or has another structural problem. It often occurs when the heart cannot pump or function well.