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When are ECGs Needed?

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When are ECGs Needed?

An ECG or EKG is an imaging procedure done by a nurse or technician to access the heart wave activity or to monitor the status of the heart’s electrical conduction system. It is the first imaging tests recommended to the patients suffering from chest pain or other heart symptoms.

In simpler, an electrocardiogram is a graphical presentation of the electrical activity of the heart muscles. The wavy lines series in an ECG report are the readings of an ECG machine that records the tracings of heartbeats and prints them onto paper. These readings are tools to diagnose heart disorders.

When you need an electrocardiogram?

When are ECGs Needed1

ECGs are the diagnostic tools that help the technician look for underlying heart conditions such as chest pain, an irregular heartbeat, shortness of breath or heavy heartbeats. Most cardiologists use ECGs to assesses the heart rhythm, chamber size, and muscle thickness. The following are some of the common reasons for which for your doctor may request an electrocardiogram (ECG):

  1. To identify the cause behind your chest pain
  2. To evaluate reasons behind severe tiredness, shortness of breath, dizziness, or fainting
  3. To detect irregular heartbeats
  4. To access the heart condition before and after the several cardiac surgeries
  5. To evaluate the functioning of heart medications
  6. To trace the heart’s function during a physical exam which is used for comparison with future ECGs and to determine the changes, if any

Is Electrocardiogram for Angioplasty or Rotablation?

In some instances, it will be vital for you to get the ECG test done together with other main procedures. These procedures include:


Angioplasty is not an emergency treatment. Your doctor will have enough time to review your entire medical history before the procedure. He will do a physical exam and order some routine tests, which include an ECG (electrocardiogram).

During an Angioplasty or PTCA or PCI, you will be connected to ECG monitor. This is to access the electrical activity of your heart and to monitor other vital signs such as heart rate, blood pressure, breathing rate, and oxygenation level during the procedure.


Rotablation is an addition to standard angioplasty procedure carried out in the Cardiac Catheter Lab in the Cardiology Department. It involves implantation of one or more stents and is usually followed by angioplasty. ECGs will be undertaken both before and after this procedure to access your blood pressure, pulse and wound site.

What Happens During An Electrocardiogram?

When are ECGs Needed2

An electrocardiogram (ECG) is a simple and non-invasive procedure. It is mostly done on an outpatient basis. Technicians and nurses mostly perform ECGs. The following are the steps involved in ECG procedure. However, the steps may vary depending on your health condition and technician practising it.

Generally, an ECG follows this process:

The patient will be asked to change to a hospital gown, and your technician exposes only the necessary skin.
The patient will be asked to lie flat on a table or a bed. It will be asked to keep quiet during the ECG, to avoid alterations in the tracing.
The technician may shave chest hair and attach the electrodes. These electrodes are connected closely to your chest, arms, and legs as it helps to record the electrical activity of your heart.
Then, your technician will attach the lead wires to the electrodes to identify information about you into the machine’s computer.
Once the tracing is completed, he or she will disconnect all the leads and electrodes attached to your chest, arms, and legs.


It is a completely painless procedure. There is no threat associated with having an electrocardiogram. ECGs only records the ECG readings and doesn’t send electricity into your body. If your technician finds any abnormality with your heart, he may order additional diagnostic tests such as echocardiogram to see if treatment is necessary.

About Sunshine Hospitals:

Sunshine Hospitals, Bhubaneswar is an ultramodern 125-bed, tertiary care hospital located in the heart of Bhubaneswar. Established in the year 2015 with a mission to provide quality healthcare services to the people of Odisha. Sunshine’s patient-first approach steers it steadily in the direction of ensuring that state-of-the-art technology meets state-of-the –heart services to produce positive patient outcomes.

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