What Does an ECG Test Determine?

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An electrocardiogram (ECG) is a common diagnostic tool used to measure the electrical activity of your heart. It detects problems with your heart's rhythm and structure, along with other abnormalities that put your health at risk.

Below, MedNorth Urgent Care will take a closer look at what an ECG test can do. Dr. Shane Hill and Dr. Scott Rundle also discuss what happens during an electrocardiogram and when you should consider having it done. Call our team in Kalispell, MT to schedule a cardiac assessment and learn how we can improve your heart health.

When should you get an ECG?

ECGs are an important tool for diagnosing conditions that increase your risk of serious heart problems. MedNorth Urgent Care may recommend an electrocardiogram if you have a personal or family history of heart disease, high blood pressure, or high cholesterol. Patients with concerning symptoms, such as chest pain, shortness of breath, or irregular heartbeat, should contact Dr. Hill or Dr. Rundle right away for an ECG.

While a regular physical exam may not pick up any abnormalities in your heart, an ECG reading can reveal important clues about how well your heart is working. If you're unsure if an ECG is right for you, MedNorth Urgent Care advises calling our team for a cardiac assessment to discuss your concerns.

What does an ECG test for?

ECGs can document the strength and timing of electrical impulses as they move through the heart. These impulses are used to diagnose the following:

  • Abnormal heart rhythm (also known as an arrhythmia)

  • If blocked or narrowed arteries in your heart are causing chest pain or a heart attack

  • If you have had a heart attack in the past

  • How well certain treatments are working, such as pacemakers

What happens during an ECG?

Patients can learn more about electrocardiograms during an annual health exam or when they have symptoms that warrant a test. If you have problems like chest pain or shortness of breath, MedNorth Urgent Care may recommend an emergency room visit based on your symptoms.

We can perform an ECG test at our clinic in Kalispell, MT for those who don't require emergency medical attention. Our team may begin by attaching small patches to your arms, legs, and chest, which will send the activity levels to our electrocardiograph. The entire process is quick and considered painless.

ECGs are noninvasive, but we need to make sure you don't move during the test. Once the recordings are complete, Dr. Hill and Dr. Rundle will interpret the results and provide you with the appropriate next steps.

What does it mean if my ECG reading is abnormal?

Try not to be too concerned if your electrocardiogram results are less than ideal. The professionals at MedNorth Urgent Care will carefully explain your results and help you get on track with your heart health. We may recommend returning for another test or referring you to a specialist for a more comprehensive look at your heart. Our goal is to ensure you have access to the best care possible.

Schedule a cardiac assessment and ECG

If you have a personal history of heart disease or have symptoms like chest pain or irregular heartbeat, don't hesitate to make an appointment with Dr. Shane Hill or Dr. Scott Rundle at MedNorth Urgent Care. We can help diagnose heart abnormalities with an ECG reading, which can help prevent serious complications in Kalispell, MT. Call for your custom cardiac assessment today.

* All information subject to change. Images may contain models. Individual results are not guaranteed and may vary.