Preventive Cardiology Clinic

Echocardiogram

 

An echocardiogram is a very useful test in evaluating the heart in general.        

There are many questions that an echocardiogram can answer such as:

 

  • Heart size

  • Systolic (squeezing) and diastolic (filling) function

  • Structural abnormlities (heart valves and chambers)

  • Aortic size

 

An echocardiogram is an ultrasound test that uses sound waves to produce a moving picture of your heart that can be seen on a video screen. The technician (sonographer) will place the transducer over different areas of your chest in order to obtain multiple views of your heart. Gel will be placed on your chest in order to form an air tight seal between the transducer and your body.

 

Here are some important points regarding an echocardiogram:

 

  • There is no preparation for the test: eat, drink, and take medications as you normally do.

  • The test is painless and takes between 20 - 45 minutes to complete.

  • The test is completely safe, no chemicals or radiation are used.

  • You will be asked to disrobe from the waist up. If you are female you will be given a gown to wear that opens in the front. Only a very small area of your chest will be exposed at any one time.

  • Three ECG electrodes will be applied so that the heart's rate and rhythm can be monitored. 

  • The images will be interpreted by Dr. Klodas, the final report will be delivered to the appropriate person within 5 - 7 business days.

Click on the video below to see a demonstration of an echocardiogram.