An electrocardiogram (EKG) records the electrical activity of your heart as it beats. The test provides insightful information about the rhythm and rate of your heart. It also shows signs of trouble such as enlargement of the heart.
You may need an EKG if you have risk factors for heart disease or you’re experiencing symptoms like palpitations or chest pain. You may also have an EKG if you’ve already been diagnosed with heart disease.
At Nova Physician Wellness Center, our personalized wellness program can include an EKG to evaluate your heart health. Our comprehensive wellness plans can also help with disease prevention and weight management. Here, our team shares more about the EKG test and why you might need one.
Signs you may need an EKG
The EKGs of healthy hearts have a distinct form. Any abnormal cardiac rhythm or damage to the heart muscle can alter the electrical activity of the heart, causing the EKG to change.
An EKG may be recommended if you have risk factors that increase your changes of developing heart disease, such as smoking, diabetes, high cholesterol, high blood pressure, or obesity. You may also need the test if you have a family history of heart disease or if you’re having symptoms such as:
- Chest pain
- Feeling faint
We can also use an EKG to check for evidence of a previous heart attack that went unnoticed, also known as a silent heart attack.
To do an EKG, we attach electrodes on various parts of your chest and limbs and measure the heart’s electrical activity with them. This activity is recorded on a graph, which we review to check for any abnormalities.
Protecting your heart
We can help you protect your heart. It starts with a heart health checkup where we determine your risk factors and create an individualized heart health plan. Together we can help you control risk factors.
Some of the major risk factors that threaten heart health are:
- Poorly managed diabetes
- Uncontrolled high blood pressure
- Elevated cholesterol
- Excess weight
- Unhealthy diet
We review your risk factors together and discuss strategies to lower your risks. Fortunately, many heart disease risk factors are within your control. While you can’t change certain risks like age and family history, you do have the power to make lifestyle changes, such as choosing nutritious foods and engaging in physical activity.
You won’t have to go it alone. Our experts are here every step of the way on your wellness journey. Whether you need nutrition counseling, an exercise plan, or assistance with losing weight, we can help.
We can perform the following checks to evaluate your heart disease risk factors.
This blood test measures the cholesterol in your blood. Cholesterol deposits called plaque can accumulate in your arteries and harden, causing them to narrow and restrict the blood flow. Bits of plaque can also break off and block crucial blood vessels that supply blood to the heart or brain, causing a heart attack or stroke.
A simple blood test can check your fasting blood sugar, too. Over time, high glucose circulating in your blood damages the blood vessels throughout your body. To keep your heart and vascular system healthy, it’s vital to maintain healthy blood sugar levels.
It only takes a few moments to check your blood pressure. High blood pressure can go unnoticed while silently damaging your cardiovascular system. In fact, hypertension is a major risk factor for heart attack and stroke.
Your heart health
We can help you make your heart health a top priority with a wellness plan to keep your heart healthy and strong. Start with a heart health checkup with one of our providers by giving our office a call to schedule a consultation.
We have offices in Fairfax, Ashburn, and Vienna, VIrginia. To keep you connected to top-quality care, we also offer telemedicine. New and existing patients can also book an appointment here on our website.