An electrocardiogram (ECG) is a simple test that can be used to check your heart's rhythm and electrical activity.
Sensors attached to the skin are used to detect the electrical signals produced by your heart each time it beats.
These signals are recorded by a machine and are looked at by a doctor to see if they're unusual.
An ECG may be requested by a heart specialist (cardiologist) or any doctor who thinks you might have a problem with your heart, including your GP.
The test can be carried out by a specially trained healthcare professional at a hospital, a clinic or at your GP surgery.
Despite having a similar name, an ECG isn't the same as an echocardiogram, which is a scan of the heart.
When an ECG is used
The diagnosis, management, and estimated mortality risk in patients with hypertension have been historically based on clinic or office blood pressure readings. Current evidence indicates that 24-hour ambulatory blood pressure monitoring should be an integral part of hypertension care. The 24-hour ambulatory monitors currently available on the market are small devices connected to the arm cuff with tubing that measure blood pressure every 15 to 30 minutes. After 24 hours, the patient returns, and the data are downloaded, including any information requested by the physician in a diary. The most useful information includes the 24-hour average blood pressure, the average daytime blood pressure, the average nighttime blood pressure, and the calculated percentage drop in blood pressure at night. The most widely used criteria for 24-hour measurements are from the American Heart Association 2017 guidelines and the European Society of Hypertension 2018 guidelines. Two important scenarios described in this document are white coat hypertension, in which patients have normal blood pressures at home but high blood pressures during office visits, and masked hypertension, in which patients are normotensive in the clinic but have high blood pressures outside of the office. The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services has made changes in its policy to allow reimbursement for a broader use of 24-hour ambulatory blood pressure monitoring within some specific guidelines. Primary care physicians should make more use of ambulatory blood pressure monitoring, especially in patients with difficult to manage hypertension.
What are the features to look for before buying an ECG machine?
Electrocardiography is the process of producing a recording of the electrical activity of the heart, in the form of a graph, using electrodes placed on certain specific spots on the body. This graph is called electrocardiogram.Point-of-Care Ultrasound: A Practical Guide for Primary Care
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Electrocardiogram (ECG) Solutions
Electrocardiogram (ECG) systems record the electrical activity of the heart over time by measuring electric potentials on the surface of living tissue. A biopotential electrode is used to pick up heart signals from specific locations on the body. The differential voltage between two electrodes, or the differential voltage between one electrode and the average voltage of multiple electrodes, can be measured and displayed as one channel on the ECG printout.
The primary function of the AFE is to digitize the heart signals. This process is complicated by the need to reject interference from strong RF sources, pace signals, lead-off signals, common-mode frequency, signals from other muscles, and electrical noise. Typically, the AFE includes instrumentation amplifiers (INAs), filtering, and ADCs. There are two kinds of ECG architecture design approaches—ac coupling and dc coupling.