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Manhattan Cardiology

What is an Echocardiogram?

An echocardiogram, also called an “echo,” is like an ultrasound for your heart that doesn’t hurt. It uses sound waves to take pictures of your heart while it’s beating. These pictures show your heart’s size, how strong it is,how the valves work, and if there are any related problems.

How Do You Prepare For an Echo?

To prepare for an echocardiogram, start by having a discussion with your healthcare provider to address any concerns and understand the purpose of the test. Follow their instructions, which may include fasting before the test. Wear loose, easy-to-remove clothing. Arrive promptly for your appointment and be prepared to remove clothing from the waist up if necessary. Inform your healthcare provider about any medications you’re taking and follow any additional instructions they provide for a smooth experience.

Why is an Echocardiogram Performed?

An echocardiogram, or heart ultrasound, is essential for several reasons. It helps check for heart murmurs caused by valve diseases (e.g. Mitral Valve Prolapse), detects atrial fibrillation (AFib), and the pump functions of the heart to detect any buildup of fluid around the heart (Pericardial Effusion). By providing detailed information about the heart’s structure and function, echocardiograms enable doctors to make precise diagnoses and tailor treatment plans for patients effectively.

What Can You Expect During an Echocardiogram?

During an echocardiogram, you can expect to lie on an examination table while a sonographer places an ultrasound wand on your chest. The wand emits sound waves that create images of your heart on a screen. You may need to change positions during the test to get different views of your heart. The procedure is painless, and no radiation is involved. Afterward, your doctor will review the images to assess your heart’s health and discuss any findings with you.

What is the Followup For an Echocardiogram?

After an echocardiogram, the follow-up typically involves your doctor reviewing the images and results of the test. They will assess your heart’s health based on the information gathered during the echocardiogram. Depending on the findings, your doctor may recommend further tests or treatments if any issues are detected. They will discuss the results with you and may provide recommendations for managing any heart conditions or maintaining heart health.


Meet Manhattan Cardiology

Karishma Patwa, MD is a board-certified cardiologist who has always been passionate about science and medicine. She knew that she wanted to help people in the best way she could, and thus pursued a career in medicine. Dr. Patwa decided to focus on cardiology because... Learn More »