Echocardiogram

Echocardiography is a test that uses sound waves to produce live images of your heart, and it has become widely used in the diagnosis and follow-up of patients with any heart diseases. It is one of the most used diagnostic tests in cardiology.

 

Echocardiogram can provide a wealth of helpful information, including pumping capacity, the location and extent of any tissue damage, estimates of heart function, such as a calculation of the cardiac output, ejection fraction, and diastolic function.

Not only can an echocardiogram create ultrasound images of heart structures, but it can also produce accurate assessment of both normal and abnormal blood flow through the heart.

Uses of echocardiogram test

Your doctor may order an echocardiogram for several reasons including:

 

  • Suspected an abnormality from other testing or while listening to your heartbeat through a stethoscope.

  • An irregular heartbeat.

  • Inspect the heart valves or chambers or to check your heart’s ability to pump.

  • Signs of heart problems, such as chest pain or shortness of breath.

Types of echocardiogram test

There are several different types of echocardiogram tests including:

  • Transthoracic echocardiography

  • Transesophageal echocardiography

  • Stress echocardiogram

  • Three-dimensional echocardiography

  • Fetal echocardiography

Causes

 

Some of Arrhythmias causes include:

  • A heart attack that's occurring right now

  • Scarring of heart tissue from a prior heart attack

  • Changes to your heart's structure, such as from cardiomyopathy

  • Blocked arteries in your heart (coronary artery disease)

  • High blood pressure

  • Overactive thyroid gland (hyperthyroidism)

  • Underactive thyroid gland (hypothyroidism)

  • Diabetes

  • Sleep apnea

  • Stress or anxiety

 

 

Risks

 

There are no risks are involved in a standard transthoracic echocardiogram. You may feel some discomfort from the transducer being held very firmly against your chest in order to produce the best images of your heart.

If you have a transesophageal echocardiogram, your throat may be sore for a few hours afterward. In very rare cases, the tube may scrape the inside of your throat.

 

Your oxygen level will be monitored during the exam to check for any breathing problems caused by sedation medication.

During a stress echocardiogram, exercise or medication (not the echocardiogram itself) may temporarily cause an irregular heartbeat. Serious complications, such as a heart attack, are rare.

Preparations and Precautions

For a standard transthoracic echocardiogram, there are no special preparations necessary. You can eat, drink and take medications as you normally would.

If you're having a transesophageal echocardiogram, your doctor will ask you not to eat for several hours beforehand, you won't be able to drive afterward because of the medication you'll likely receive. Be sure to arrange for a ride back to home.

Heart & Vascular Consultants

Locations

Heart & Vascular Consultants

Address: Address: 4160 John R St, Suite 724, Detroit, MI 48201

Phone: (313) 832-8888

Heart & Vascular Consultants

Address: 14555 Levan Rd Suite 303, Livonia, MI 48154

Phone: (734) 953-1111

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