Electrocardiogram (ECG/EKG)

An ECG/EKG or an electrocardiogram is a specific test that calculates the electrical activity of the heart. The heart is an organ made up of muscles that beats in a certain rhythm in order that it can pump blood to the different areas of the body. During an ECG test the electrical impulses that are created when the heart is beating are recorded on a piece of paper especially meant for this purpose. The ECG records any discrepancies in the rhythm of the heart. However an ECG may seem normal even if there is some heart ailment, therefore one may need to do further tests to know what is wrong. An ECG is performed by attaching 12 self adhering electrodes to specific points on the skin of the arms, legs and chest. The test hardly takes a minute and once it has been taken the electrodes are removed. There are many types of ECG services that are used to interpret and transfer data.  

As mentioned above the electrocardiogram represents the electrical activity of the heart. The diagram thus received as a result on the paper has to be interpreted by the physician. The doctor on seeing an ECG will be able to interpret the heart rate, the heart rhythm, cardiac axis, P waves, PR interval, QRS complex, ST segments, QT interval, T waves and arrhythmias. Often junior doctors are rather afraid of interpreting these readings as they are worried that they may miss out important diagnosis. Today, thanks to the Internet, online ECG interpretation services are a plenty and the patient gets to have his disease diagnosed sooner.