EKG or ECG Test – Types, Treatment, Procedure, and Results

Heart disease can be very hazardous if not taken care of. And one of the most essential parts of starting heart treatment is diagnosing the condition. For analysis, different medical tests are run on the patient, showing the exact heart problems.

In this article, we will discuss one of the most common heart diagnosing tests called ECG or EKG. We will share all the information patients need to know about this test. So keep reading this article for maximum information.

ecg test

Introduction to Electrocardiography

An ECG test records the electrical signal of the heart. The human heart follows a constant electrical signal, resulting in heartbeats. An ECG test monitors the heart’s healthy by recording this electrical signal.

There is a term used called Borderline ECG which displays the irregularity in the heartbeat. The spike and drops in the ECG result data help doctors identify heart health. ECG is usually taken in a hospital or medical facility. Ambulances also have an ECG machine for emergencies.

Types of ECG/EKG

The ECG tests have different variations. All these types have different procedures for identifying the heart rate and are used for different circumstances. We have shared some of the most common and helpful ECG Scan types.

ECG Stress Test

This ECG type is used to detect coronary heart disease. The doctor uses this type to see heart health when the patient’s heart is stressed. A nuclear stress test is used in this type which image the heart health using a radioactive tracer.

Event Monitor

An event monitor is used on the patient who already has some heart-related diseases. The type of ECG Monitor is always attached to the body and activated when the patient has chest pain or palpitations. This device helps detect the Abnormal ECG and diagnose the cause of these symptoms.

Exercise ECG

Patients who suffer from heart problems while exercising use this ECG test. The patient’s heart is monitored when he is doing some exercise. The patient will walk on the treadmill or cycle stationary while monitoring his heart with an ECG machine.

Holter Monitor

A Holter monitor is a small device connected to the patient’s body 24/7. This type is very similar to the even monitor. The only difference is that Holter keeps monitoring heart activity the whole time. ECG Apple Watch is an example of a Holter Monitor. This type helps record all daily heart activity of the arrhythmia patients.

Resting ECG

Resting ECG is a standard heart testing ECG type. This test is taken by laying down the patient and attaching some sticky wires to his body. This test is usually done in a doctor’s office or hospital. This helps detect many heart diseases, arrhythmia, and heart muscle damage.

Signal-Averaged ECG

Some heart disease has no major symptom, making it difficult to detect on a regular Electrocardiogram machine. Such diseases like atrial fibrillation are detected with the help of signal-averaged ECG. This type detects even a slight electrical disturbance of the heart.

Vector cardiogram

This type of ECG provides a very in-detail report of the heart’s electrical activity. This ECG type is usually used for patients with major heart problems like congenital heart defects. 

The Procedure of Performing an ECG Test

An ECG test is fast and doesn’t hurt at all. Most of the time, the normal resting ECG is used for most patients. Some sticky electrodes are attached to the patient’s body to record the heart activity.

After the ECG tests, a printout of the result, which is just your heart activity, is handed over to the doctor who sees these results. The spike and drop show your heart’s exact activity, and doctors diagnose the heart problem based on these results.

We have discussed the exact procedure of an ECG test below. So you are not afraid or confused while getting one.

  • You will be asked to lie down on the bed or table in the operating room.
  • After that, the technician will clean certain skin parts of your body where the electrodes or ECG Leads are attached.
  • The technician selects these body parts. Usually, the warm points on your hands, chest, and legs are chosen.
  • The operator will run the ECG machine, and the heartbeat tracing will start.
  • You just need to keep lying and breathing normally. 
  • This process will continue for a few minutes. 
  • After the tracing, the technician will remove the electrodes from your body.

Results of ECG/EKG Test

After the test is complete, the paper you will get will have the result of your EKG or ECG test. This result can be normal or abnormal based on the heart activity throughout the process. 

The page only has some waves, and the doctor sees them to understand what possible disorder the patient might have based on these wavelengths. We have discussed the two findings of this test.

Normal Findings

The result of your heartbeat rhythm printed on the paper shows whether your heart is healthy or has some problem. Doctors look at the spikes and drops of the ECG report. If the wavelengths are smooth and constant, this shows Normal ECG.

Getting the ECG helps identify the heart condition. So if the patient has no heart disease, it will be shown in the ECG report. You can see the WPW ECG to identify the exact result of your report.

Abnormal Findings

There is another situation which is abnormal findings. Mostly the ECG report is done to determine what kind of heart disease the patient has. So even if your ECG reports show negative results, you have to consult with your doctor about the possible disorder you have.

Some of the abnormal findings from the ECG report are discussed below.

  • Arrhythmias: Arrhythmia is the regulation of the heartbeat. There are different types of arrhythmia, and the exact type will be diagnosed with the help of ECG.
  • Heart Enlargement: This is the condition when the heart muscles get enlarged due to heart disease like blood pressure or congenital heart disease.
  • Heart Valve Problem: The heart valve that controls the blood flow and regulates blood circulation gets damaged in this condition. The ECG report also diagnoses this disease.
  • Ischemia: This is the lack of blood supply in the heart that damages the heart muscles and irregulates the heartbeat.
  • Myocardial Infraction: This condition is the result of Ischemia. The heart muscles die because of a lack of blood supply which causes a heart attack.

What is the Difference between ECG and EKG?

Both the ECG and EKG are the same tests. The only difference between these two is the abbreviation different people use. In the United States, ECG is mainly used as the Electrocardiogram abbreviation. However, EKG is more commonly used in Europe as the abbreviation of Elektrokardiogramm.

Electrocardiogram is a German word and is mostly used throughout Europe. That’s why the EKG abbreviation is so common. But other than that, these two are the same test. The same procedure is used to carry out the test, and the results are the same.

Treatments for Abnormal ECG

If a patient has been discovered with some problem in their ECG report and has been diagnosed with a heart condition, he will require immediate medical attention. There are many treatment options to improve the heart health.

We have discussed some of the most effective treatments for abnormal EKG or ECG reports. You ask for further suggestions from your doctor.

Medical treatment

Medication is the most effective and popular of treating many heart diseases. But it is very important to identify which part problem the patient is facing before taking any medicines. Your doctor will check your ECG report and suggest medication according to your results.

Some of the common medicine used for regulating heart diseases are listed below;

  • Antiarrhythmic Medications
  • Beta-Blockers
  • Calcium Channel blockers
  • Digoxin
  • Electrolyte Supplements

Ayurvedic Treatment

Like the brand name or generic drugs, some Ayurvedic medicines help improve heart health. A major benefit of using Ayurvedic medicine is that these pills don’t have any side effects and are made of organic components.

It is suggested to ask the doctor before taking the Ayurvedic medicines. Some of the common Ayurvedic medicine usually used by heart patients are below.

Exercise Treatment

A beneficial and easy-to-do treatment for improving heart health is exercise. Most doctors and heart specialists strongly recommend that heart patients should exercise regularly. Even doing a little 30-minute walk a day can improve heart health by large margins

It should be considered that the heart patient cannot do any challenging exercises. The activity should affect his heart rate a lot. Some of the exercises heart patients can do are:

Bottom Line

Heart diseases are hazardous and can cause sudden death if not treated properly. We always suggest our readers get medical attention and run medical tests like the ECG or EKG to check their heart health. 

Ask your doctor for the required treatment in case of a negative ECG report. Never take medication by your own choice. And keep getting this ECG test from time to time to keep the heart health in check.

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