What is it?

The electrocardiogram (ECG) is the first and simplest test that you undergo if you have any heart symptoms. An ECG records the electrical activity of your heart for a few seconds. This simple test provides the cardiologist with valuable information on heart rate (number of beats per minute) and the regularity of the rhythm. Additionally, certain abnormalities in the ECG can point to structural differences or a lack of oxygen in the heart.

What is the process?

Preparation

You will be asked to remove your upper clothing and to lie on the treatment table. Your skin will be sprayed with a small quantity of alcohol to ensure good conductivity. Suction pads are placed on each limb and six suction pads are placed on the chest.

Procedure

You will be asked to lie still and to try to relax. While you are lying still on the treatment table, the device will record your heart rhythm. This is converted to an ECG strip that is immediately visible on a monitor and can be printed. The test takes three minutes.

Aftercare

No specific aftercare is required.

Results

The cardiologist will discuss the test results with you immediately after the procedure.

Centres and specialist areas

Cardiac surgery
Cardiology

Latest publication date: 05/02/2021
Supervising author: Dr Provenier Frank