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When is an electrocardiogram (electrocardiogram) used?

The article is professionally consulted by Master, Doctor Cao Thanh Tam - Cardiologist - Cardiovascular Center - Vinmec Central Park International General Hospital.
Electrocardiogram, which is a non-invasive, painless test, is one of the bases to help doctors diagnose abnormal heart problems. In medicine, the use of electrocardiogram helps to detect cardiovascular diseases such as arrhythmia, heart failure, myocardial infarction, diagnose some changes, general heart disorders.

1. What is an electrocardiogram?

Electrocardiogram, also known as electrocardiogram (ECG), is an image recording the electrical activity of the heart, the electrical impulses emitted by heart muscle cells are recorded as a graph through contact electrodes. received on the skin.

2. In what cases is electrocardiogram indicated?

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Đo điện tim khi nào?
Diagnosing cardiac arrhythmias: abnormalities at the location of the beat (sinus node, atrial node, myocardium) will show an abnormal heart rhythm on the electrocardiogram; Diagnosis of atrial and ventricular hypertrophy: the process of depolarization and repolarization of the myocardium will change, thereby on the electrocardiogram paper will give certain suggestions about the condition of the large heart chambers. Diagnosis of conduction disorders: damage or loss of conduction in conduction will show an abnormal picture of the electrical branch of the heart on the electrocardiogram (AV block, Cardiac bundle branch block). Diagnosis of the stages of myocardial infarction: when the myocardium is deprived of blood and oxygen, which can lead to damage or necrosis, the electrical conduction capacity of the myocardium will change. This change is noted on the electrocardiogram, which is one of the most valuable diagnoses of this cardiovascular laboratory approach. Diagnosis of myocardial ischemic heart disease: ischemic myocardium will show a T wave image on a flattened electrocardiogram, a negative T wave. Diagnosis of electrolyte disorders: electrocardiogram is due to the movement of ions (sodium, potassium, calcium...). When there is a change in the concentration of these substances, the electrocardiogram is likely to change accordingly. Diagnosis of myocardial and pericardial lesions. Monitor pacemakers. Diagnosis of some drug poisoning: digoxin alters the ST segment of many leads, tricyclic antidepressants prolong the QT interval. In addition, electrocardiogram is also indicated in many non-specific cases: the elderly (people at high risk of cardiovascular disease), hypertensive patients, patients with dyslipidemia (blood lipids). ), diabetes, smoking, angina, palpitations, shortness of breath, history of syncope or emergency hospital admission for any cause... are often indicated to perform an electrocardiogram.

3. How is the electrocardiogram measured?

The doctor will attach 10 electrodes with adhesive pads to the skin of the chest, arms and legs of the person being measured. Men with chest hair may need to shave (a little) to better connect the electrodes. During the measurement, the person being measured is lying on their back, the computer will create a graph on paper, draw electrical impulses moving through the heart, or check the heart during exercise (stress electrocardiogram).
It may take about 10 minutes to attach the electrodes and complete the test but the actual graphing only takes a few seconds. Besides the standard ECG, the doctor may perform other types for diagnostic purposes such as: portable electrocardiogram (checking the electrical activity of the heart for 1-2 days, 24 hours/day) ).
After the electrocardiogram, the doctor will read the waveforms recorded during the test to detect if the pulses are normal. Patients are usually informed of results on the same day or at the next follow-up appointment. If the results show an abnormality in the heart, the patient may have to have other types of electrocardiogram or perform other diagnostic tests such as echocardiography...depending on the doctor's assessment.
The patient can resume normal activities after the electrocardiogram is performed. Electrocardiogram test results require a qualified physician to read and draw conclusions, so the physician's professional role in electrocardiography is very important.
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Kết quả xét nghiệm điện tâm đồ
Vinmec International General Hospital has applied electrocardiogram technique in examination and diagnosis of many cardiovascular diseases. Electrocardiogram at Vinmec is carried out methodically and in accordance with standard procedures by a team of highly qualified medical professionals, modern machinery system, thus giving accurate results, making a significant contribution to the identification. disease and disease stage.
Master - Doctor Cao Thanh Tam has many years of experience in the diagnosis and treatment of cardiovascular diseases; Performing transthoracic echocardiography in the field of internal medicine and interventional Cardiology; Perform other non-invasive functional investigations in the diagnosis and treatment of cardiovascular diseases. Currently working as a cardiologist at Vinmec Central Park International General Hospital since November 2015.

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