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Health

ECG vs. EKG: Separating Fact from Fiction

The electrocardiogram is nothing more than a non-invasive exam; that is, it is an exam in which it is unnecessary to make any cut or any other procedure of greater complexity on the patient, in addition to being painless. Learn more on Cardiocare.

Its operation occurs through the measurement, in a very simplified way, of the electrical currents that the heart muscle emits. In this way, the electrocardiogram records the electrical information emitted by the heart, considering its beats, and then transcribes them onto a screen or paper. 

This exam gives us those characteristic “scratches” that everyone knows well! To perform the exam the ecg vs. ekg, the patient must lie on a stretcher, face up, with a small device called a portable electrocardiograph, which is used to record the ECG on the computer.

Subsequently, the electrocardiogram technician will place the electrodes attached to the skin of the patient’s arms (anterior faces of the wrists), legs (anteromedial faces), and chest, which will capture the electrical stimuli of his heart or their repercussions to the distance.

Your skin needs to be very clean and degreased in the places where the electrodes will be attached. The electrocardiogram technician often applies a gel under the skin to facilitate the capture of these stimuli.

The electrodes on the limbs are attached using bracelets, while those on the chest are attached to a type of rubber suction cup, allowing skin adherence without the need to use needles or other invasive instruments.

If the patient has a lot of hair on their body, it is recommended to do local waxing, and if they have very oily skin, local cleaning with alcohol should be done.

Prerequisites

There are no prerequisites for performing an electrocardiogram; there are not many prerequisites. In addition to going to the unit with all documentation and at the scheduled time, the patient must inform which medications they are taking, as some medications can alter the test results. 

Furthermore, the patient must observe the list of contraindications for the exam. 

Exam Preparation

Now, let’s go through the basic instructions for taking the exam.

Men, the day before the exam, must trim their chest hair so that there is no interference during the exam.

Women should wear a sports bra or a bra that does not have an “underwire.”

Now, the instruction for both sexes:

Arrive 10 minutes early;

The examination should not be carried out with accessories, such as jewelry on the neck, arms, or wrist;

The patient should always report to the doctor the medications they take, as some of them can cause changes in the test results;

It is not recommended to practice physical exercise before the exam, as it can alter the level of your heartbeat;

Bring the doctor’s order and an identity document, and;

A guardian must accompany minors under 18.

Duration

The electrocardiogram usually takes 5 to 10 minutes to complete.

Periodicity Of The Electrocardiogram

The examination must be conducted periodically, depending on age group and biological sex. 

Therefore, women over 50 and men over 40 should have an ECG exam yearly. 

In addition, it can also be requested for admission and dismissal exams for workers.

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