What is Electrocardiogram?
During a heartbeat, three distinct actions take place to pump blood. The atria (two upper chambers) of the heart open to pump blood out, the ventricles (two lower chambers) constrict to pump blood out, and the ventricles rest. The exact amount of time it takes for each of these functions – and the correlation of the times – is measured during an electrocardiogram.
This simple procedure only takes a couple of minutes and can be performed in your physician’s office. During an ECG, you lie on a table and electrodes connected to adhesive patches are attached to specific sites on your chest, legs and arms. Lead wires from these electrodes are connected to ECG machine that records your heart’s electrical activity. The machine prints out precise measurements, called an ECG tracing, for your physician’s interpretation.
An ECG tracing is made up of these four measurements.
- P wave: Time is takes for atria to opening in order to pump blood
- QRS complex: Time it takes for ventricles to contract in order to pump blood
- ST segment: Period between the end of ventricles’ contraction and the beginning of the rest period.
- T wave: Length of the ventricles’ rest period.
Learn more about electrocardiogram here:
- Conditions related to electrocardiogram
- Side effects of electrocardiogram
- Survivability of electrocardiogram
- Services related to electrocardiogram