1. What is echocardiography?
Echocardiography is a test for your heart which uses sound waves to take photographs and videos of your heart. The images show the shape and size of the heart, functioning of the heart muscles, valves and blood flow to the heart.
2. Why do I need an echocardiography?
You may need an echocardiography in case of the following conditions: shortness of breath; swelling on the feet; abnormal heartbeats; high blood pressure; problems in the heart such as a hole in the heart since birth; heart attack; and abnormal sound from the heart (heart murmur).
3. Does a doctor perform echocardiography?
No, a doctor cannot perform an echocardiography. A technician trained in performing sonography of the heart will perform the echocardiography. Your doctor will study the pictures and the videos taken in the test.
4. What conditions can be diagnosed using echocardiography?
Echocardiography can diagnose the following conditions: blood clots in the heart vessels; damage to the heart muscles from a heart attack; problems in heart valves; hole in the heart in children; changes in heart size due to high blood pressure; presence of fluid in the membranes surrounding the heart; and problems in the heart of foetus in the mother’s uterus.
5. How do I prepare for echocardiography?
For most of the types of echocardiography, you do not need any special preparation. For transesophageal echocardiography, your doctor will advise you not to have food or drink eight hours before the test. In stress echocardiography, you may be advised to wear special shoes or clothing.