What is ECG ?
An electrocardiogram — abbreviated as EKG or ECG — is a test that measures the electrical activity of the heartbeat. With each beat, an electrical impulse (or “wave”) travels through the heart. This wave causes the muscle to squeeze and pump blood from the heart. A normal heartbeat on ECG will show the timing of the top and lower chambers.
An electrocardiogram is a painless, noninvasive way to help diagnose many common heart problems in people of all ages.
Why is it done?
You may need an ECG if you have any of the following signs and symptoms:
- Chest pain
- Dizziness, lightheadedness or confusion
- Heart palpitations
- Rapid pulse
- Shortness of breath
- Weakness, fatigue or a decline in ability to exercise
Does it hurt?
No. There’s no pain or risk associated with having an electrocardiogram. When the ECG stickers are removed, there may be some minor discomfort.
Is it harmful?
No. The machine only records the ECG. It doesn’t send electricity into the body.