The heart is a two-stage electrical pump that circulates blood throughout the body. The anatomy includes four chambers and four valves. For the heart to function normally these structures need to be intact and the heart muscle needs to beat in a coordinated fashion, so that blood flows in and out of each chamber in the proper direction.
An echocardiogram (echo=sound + card=heart + gram=drawing) is an ultrasound test that can evaluate the structures of the heart, as well as the direction of blood flow within it. Technicians specially trained in echocardiography produce the images and videos, often using a special probe or transducer that is placed in various places on the chest wall, to view the heart from different directions. Cardiologists, or heart specialists, are trained to evaluate these images to assess heart function and provide a report of the results.The echocardiogram is just one of the many tests that can be done to evaluate heart anatomy and function.
An electrocardiogram (EKG, ECG) is the most common heart tracing done. Electrodes are placed on the chest wall and collect information about the electrical activity of the heart. Aside from the rate and rhythm of the heartbeat, the EKG can provide indirect evidence of blood flow within arteries to heart muscle and the thickness of heart muscle.
Uses Of Echocardiography
Echoccardiography can detect many heart problems. Some might be minor and pose no risk to you. Others can be signs of serious heart disease or other heart conditions. We at Suraj Diagnostics may use echo to learn about:
The size of your heart. An enlarged heart might be the result of high blood pressure, leaky heart valves, or heart failure. Echo also can detect increased thickness of the ventricles (the heart's lower chambers). Increased thickness may be due to high blood pressure, heart valve disease, or congenita heart defects.
Heart muscles that are weak and aren't pumping well. Damage from a heart attack may cause weak areas of heart muscle. Weakening also might mean that the area isn't getting enough blood supply, a sign of coronary heart disease.
Heart valve problems. Echo can show whether any of your heart valves don't open normally or close tightly.
Problems with your heart's structure. Echo can detect congenital heart defects, such as holes in the heart. Congenital heart defects are structural problems present at birth. Infants and children may have echo to detect these heart defects.
Blood clots or tumors. If you've had a stroke, you may have echo to check for blood clots or tumors that could have caused the stroke.
The purpose of the echocardiogram is to assess the structure and function of the heart. The results will provide information that can help the health care professional make a diagnosis that involves the heart.
Echocardiograms may be repeated over time, monitoring heart function and the results may help decide whether previous treatment has been effective and whether any changes in that treatment program are required.
An echocardiogram (echo) is a graphic outline of the heart's movement. During an echo test, ultrasound (high-frequency sound waves) from a hand-held wand placed on your chest provides pictures of the heart's valves and chambers and helps the sonographer evaluate the pumping action of the heart. Echo is often combined with Doppler ultrasound and color Doppler to evaluate blood flow across the heart's valves.
The test is used to:
Assess the overall function of your heart
Determine the presence of many types of heart disease, such as valve disease, myocardial disease, pericardial disease, infective endocarditis, cardiac masses and congenital heart disease
Follow the progress of valve disease over time
Evaluate the effectiveness of your medical or surgical treatments
Prevent Breast Cancer
Dr Sumita Singh is talking about the importance of Breast Ultrasound over Mammography in the females below the age of 40 years and how this can result in early detection of Breast Cancer in women below the age of 40 who have dense breasts and Mammography doesn't give accurate information in such females.
However Mammography is the best diagnostic modality for scanning the breasts in women above the age of 40 years. Excessive reliance on these diagnostic machines is also not a good idea and one must see a breast specialist before deciding to go for any kind of testing