Echocardiography is a type of medical test that uses soundwaves to produce images of a person’s heart. It allows a doctor to monitor how the heart and its main valves are functioning and is a key diagnostic tool in determining how well a person’s heart muscle is functioning – particularly if a person has recently suffered a heart attack. It is a painless procedure for the patient and provides information on the following:
• Possible blood clots in heart’s chambers
• Fluid in the sac around a heart
• Issues with the aorta, the main artery connected to the heart
• Effectiveness of the pumping function of the heart
• Issues with heart valves
• Pressure of blood flowing through the heart
A doctor may order an echocardiogram for a variety of reasons: they may have discovered an abnormality through other tests or after listening to a person’s heartbeat through a stethoscope.