An echocardiogram, or "echo", is a scan used tolook atthe heart and nearby blood vessels.
It's a type of Ultrasound scan , which means a small probe is used to send out high-frequency sound waves thatcreate echoeswhen they bounce off different parts of the body.
Theseechoes are picked up by the probe and turned into a moving image that's displayedon a monitor while the scan is carried out.
An echocardiogram 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 will usually be carried out at a hospital or clinic by a cardiologist or a trained specialist called a cardiac physiologist.
Although it has a similar name, an echocardiogram isn't the same as an electrocardiogram (ECG) , which is a test used to check your heart's rhythm and electrical activity.
Read about echocardiograms, including why they're done, what happens during the test, and what the risks are.
An echocardiogram can help diagnose and monitor certain heart conditions by checking the structure of the heart and surrounding blood vessels, analysing how blood flows through them, and assessing the
There are several different ways an echocardiogram can be carried out, but most people will have what's known as a transthoracic echocardiogram (TTE). This procedure is outlined below. You won't usua
In some cases, it may be possible for the person carrying out the scan to discuss the results with you soon after it's finished. However, the images from the scan will usually need to be analysed bef
A standard echocardiogram is a simple, painless and safe procedure. There are no side effectsfrom the scan, although the lubricating gel may feel cold and you may experience some minor discomfort when