What is an EKG and what does it show?

What is an EKG and what does it show?

An electrocardiogram (EKG) is a tool used to measure the electrical activity of the heart. It records the heart’s rhythm and can detect any abnormalities in its function. The results of this test can tell you a lot about your heart, including its size and shape, how well it’s functioning, and even if you have any underlying conditions that could be causing problems.The LOOKEE® Personal ECG / EKG Heart Monitor is one of the most advanced at home heart health monitors available on the market and is recommended by leading physicians. Let’s take a look at what exactly an EKG is and how it works, as well as what the results mean for your health. 

The LOOKEE® Personal ECG / EKG Heart Monitor consists of leads that can be placed on various parts of the body to measure electrical signals from the heart. The leads pick up these electrical signals and then transmit them to the handheld touchscreen monitor, which processes and displays the data.. The results can then be interpreted to identify any abnormalities in cardiac function. The use of LOOKEE® Personal ECG / EKG Heart Monitor is a supplement to EKG check ups done by your doctor or in hospital.

Note that this device is not intended to diagnose or treat any medical condition or disease. Data on these devices is for reference purposes only and is not intended to substitute for advice given by a physician, pharmacist, or other licensed healthcare professional. You should not use this information for self-diagnosis or for treating a health problem or disease on your own. Contact your healthcare provider immediately if you have any cardiac symptoms. 

How Does an EKG Work?

The electrical signals transmitted by an EKG measure the activity of each heartbeat. They also track changes in electrical activity over time, allowing you to observe trends in your  cardiac health over time. By analyzing these trends, you can detect conditions such as arrhythmias (irregular heartbeat), blocked arteries, and structural changes in the heart's chambers or valves that could indicate underlying problems with cardiovascular health to report to your physician for further checkups and confirmation.  

Why Is an EKG Important? 

An EKG is important because it provides vital information about your heart health that would otherwise be difficult to obtain without invasive procedures or extensive testing. It also helps you identify potential problems early so that appropriate treatment can be started sooner rather than later before more serious complications arise or existing issues worsen. Additionally, many insurance companies require an EKG before they will cover certain treatments or medications for cardiac conditions; therefore, it is essential for anyone who may need coverage for their cardiac care to have an accurate and up-to-date EKG on file with their doctor. 

What Do Hospital Grade EKG Results Tell Your Doctor? 

The results of an EKG done by a doctor or in hospital can tell you a lot about the function of your heart. It can give information about the rate and rhythm of your heartbeat, detect any damage to the muscle tissue in the heart walls, identify abnormal rhythms or arrhythmias, detect early signs of coronary artery disease (CAD), diagnose certain types of congenital heart defects (CHD) such as atrial septal defect (ASD) or ventricular septal defect (VSD), identify signs indicating a previous heart attack (MI) has occurred, help determine whether medication is working correctly to treat existing cardiac conditions, and provide evidence for other medical diagnoses such as electrolyte imbalances or electrolyte-related medical issues. Additionally, it can also alert you and your doctors to potential abnormalities in other areas of the body such as lungs and blood vessels. 

Understanding an EKG Reading 

The P Wave 

The first waveform you’ll see on your EKG readout is called the P wave. It’s produced when your heart’s upper chambers contract, which happens when the SA node signals them to do so. The P wave should be rounded and smooth, with no bumps or spikes. If there are any irregularities in this waveform, it could indicate that your atria are not functioning properly. 

The QRS Complex 

Next up is the QRS complex. This waveform is created when your heart’s lower chambers contract—which occurs when the AV node signals them to do so—and it is normally quite tall and wide on an EKG readout. The QRS complex should be relatively symmetrical; if there are any abnormalities here, they could indicate issues with your ventricles or valves.                         

The T Wave 

The last component you’ll see on an EKG readout is the T wave, which indicates that your heart has finished contracting and is now in its resting phase. This waveform should also be rounded and symmetrical; if there are any irregularities here, it could mean that your heart isn't recovering from contraction as quickly as it should be. In addition, this can also signal problems with electrolyte levels or other underlying medical issues. 

Common abnormalities that can be detected on an EKG:

Arrhythmias: An arrhythmia is an abnormal heart rhythm. There are many types of arrhythmias, some of which can be detected on an EKG. For example, atrial fibrillation is a type of arrhythmia characterized by rapid and irregular heartbeats, and it can be detected on an EKG. Other types of arrhythmias that may be detected on an EKG include atrial flutter, supraventricular tachycardia, and ventricular tachycardia.

Heart attack: A heart attack, also known as a myocardial infarction, occurs when blood flow to the heart is blocked. An EKG can often detect a heart attack in progress, as it can show changes in the heart's electrical activity that may indicate a blockage.

Enlargement of the heart: An EKG can also show if the heart is enlarged, which can be a sign of a number of different heart conditions, including heart failure, high blood pressure, and coronary artery disease.

Hypertrophy: Hypertrophy is the term for thickening of the heart muscle. An EKG can show if the heart muscle is thickened, which can be a sign of high blood pressure or other conditions that put strain on the heart.

Strain: An EKG can also show if the heart is under strain, which can be a sign of a number of different conditions, including coronary artery disease and heart failure.

Overall, an electrocardiogram (EKG) is a useful tool for assessing risks associated with cardiovascular diseases such as coronary artery disease or heart attack. An EKG measures the electrical activity of your heart by placing electrodes around your body and transmitting them to a computer where they are analyzed and displayed on a monitor or paper strip. This allows you to detect any abnormalities in cardiac function so that treatment can begin earlier rather than later if necessary. Additionally, many insurance companies require an up-to-date EKG before providing coverage for certain treatments or medications related to cardiac conditions—so if you think you may need coverage for your cardiac care at some point in your life, the LOOKEE® Personal ECG / EKG Heart Monitor is a great device to have on hand to assist with daily monitoring of your heart health.