Your guide to an echocardiogram (echo) 

Do you have an echocardiogram coming up? Watch this video to find out what to expect.

Find out about diagnosis and risk assessment for heart disease

Transcript of Your guide to an echocardiogram (echo)

BRITISH HEART FOUNDATION THE ROAD AHEAD:YOUR GUIDE TO ECHOCARDIOGRAM This film will show you what to expect if you are havinga transthoracic echocardiogram, often called an echo. My name is Ian Keown. I'm 57 years old. I'm a televisioncameraman from Twickenham. Today I'm having an echocardiogramas I have an irregular heartbeat. I've got a very active job, I'm often up and downfootball terracing carrying heavy boxes. It doesn't interfere with my lifebut I know that it increases certain risk of having strokesand things like that. It's something thatought to be corrected. My name is Becky Reynolds, I'm the lead physiologist in theecho department at St George's Hospital. A transthoracic echocardiogramis an ultrasound scan of the heart that allows us to take pictures ofthe inside structures of the heart. We're going to pop someultrasound stickers on your chest. This will give usa reading of your heart rate. We're just going to wire you up. There's a whole variety of reasonswhy one might perform an echocardiogram, but it's mainly to look at the structure and the underlyingmuscle function of the heart. We're going to get youlying on your left-hand side. That just puts the heartin a good position for us. The patient has to strip to the waist. If it's a lady, we'll always offera gown so they feel more comfortable. This arm, if I can ask youto rest it up behind the head. Just brings the ribcage up. The main body of the test is just for usto apply some ultrasound gel to different areas on the chest.We simply scan over different areas and the ultrasound will bereflected back into the echo machine and from that, we collect imageswhich we will then analyse later. Hold your breath there. Keep it there. (heartbeat on machine) OK, that's fine. Excellent.We've got everything that we need. Alright? So I'll just take these off. (Ian) It was completely stress-free,no pain. No trouble at all. Quite pleasant. Nice to havea relaxing afternoon really. Nice lie down, little rest.No stress, no worries. (narrator) Heart disease is stillthe single biggest killer in the UK. But for over 50 years,we've tirelessly pioneered research that has helped transform the lives of people with heartand circulatory conditions. Join our fight forevery heartbeat in the UK. Every pound raised,every minute of your time and every donation to our shopswill help make a difference. BHF THANKS ST GEORGE'S HOSPITALFOR HELP WITH THIS FILM FIGHT FOR EVERY HEARTBEATbhf.org.uk BRITISH HEART FOUNDATION

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