What is an Electrocardiogram (ECG)?

An ECG provides the doctors with invaluable information on the electrical rhythm of the heart, electrical conduction, muscle mass, the presence of an unstable rhythm, ischemia or infarction and the effects drugs may be having on the heart. It is a harmless, painless procedure, which can last up to 10 minutes. You may have an ECG as part of your routine examination to screen for heart disease or any potential changes in your rhythm. It is a quick and non-invasive test.

You should allow 5-10 minutes for this test to be undertaken.

Before your procedure:

  • Take your usual medications.
  • Wear a two piece outfit on the day so you can easily undress to your waist.
During your procedure set up:

The Nurse or cardiac technician will place 10 ECG dots on your body (4 on your limbs and 6 across the chest). They will then connect these ECG dots to a monitor.

The ECG will capture a moment in time of your heart rate and rhythm. Please inform the nurse/technician if you are taking any medication that may affect your heart rate.

After your procedure:

After the procedure you may see your cardiologist for a consult. He will review the ECG and discuss any concerns with you. A formal letter or report will also be sent, along with the ECG to your referring doctor and/or GP.