> html xmlns:fb="http://www.facebook.com/2008/fbml" class="no-js hl-reset" lang="en"> head>> name="ROBOTS" content="NOODP"/> ttp-equiv="Content-Type" content="text/html; charset=utf-8"> Echocardiogram: Purpose, Types & Risks> ardiograms a tst that uses sound waves to produce live images of your heart, ali your doctor to monior wyour heart and its valves are f unctioning.An echoccardigramm, also refere o as lp spot blood clots in the h" /> meta http-equiv="content-languag" content="en">
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<2_head">What Is an Echocardiogram? h2>

An echocardiogram is a test that uses sound waves to produce live images of oueart, allowing yor doctor tto montor howy e its valvse functioning. reasons<>

An echocardiogram, also referred to as “echo,” can help spot blood clots in the heart, fluid in the sac around the heart, and probsstrong>aortaa d problems with the (the main artery connected to the heart). <

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It is a key test in determining the health of heart muscle, namely after a heart attack. It also helps doctors discover heart defects in unborn babies. p>

An echocardiogram is painless, but does have some riss, although rarre.

h2 id="TOC_TITLE_HDR_" class="content_head">/a>Why an Echocardiogram Is Performed <"TOC_TITLE_HDR_2" class="content_head">Why an Echocardiogram>
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Your doctor may order an echocardility to pump. <>problems while listening to your heartbeat though a stethoscope. <


placed over the woman’s belly to check the fetus for heart problems.eeeos,sdee uems. As the test doesn’t use radiation (such as X-rays), the test is considered safe for the unborn child.

The Risks of an Echocardiogram

Unlike other imaging techniques, such as X-rays, echocardiograms do not use radiation and are therefore considered safe.

A transthoracic echocardiogram carries no risk. There is a chance for slight discomfort—like pulling off a Band-Aid—when the electrodes are removed from your skin. <>

p>For a transesophageal echocardiogram, there is a rare chance the tube mmay scrape the side of your esophagus, causing irritation. The most common side effect is a sore throat or feeling a bit funny because of ecause of the sedative used in the procedure.

In a stress echocardiogram, the medication or exercise used to get your heart rate up could cause an irregular heartbeat temporarily. Major risks are reduced because the activity and medication are done under supervision.

for a transesophageal echocardiogram, there is a rare chance the tube may scr>How to Prepare for an Echocardiogram

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A transthoracic echocardiogram requires no special preparation.

If you undergo a transesophageal echoardiogram, you may be instructed to fast for a few hours before the test. This is reqequired in order to prevent you from vomitingng during t the test. You also may not be able to drive for a few hours after the test due to thehe sedatives. /p>

If your doctor has ordered a stress echocardiogram, wear clothes and shoes that are comfortable to exercise in. /p>

After an Echocardiogram

After your test, your doctor will review the findings. This could include issues regarding:

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  • damage to heart muscle
  • heart defects> heart size <>
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  • pumping strengthli>
  • i>valve problems
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If your doctor detects serious problems, he or she may refer you to a cardiologist (a doctor specializing in the heart). /p>

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