An echocardiogram is a specialized type of ultrasound that displays real-time images of the heart via sound waves. The “-cardi-” root word indicates that this technology is specifically designed to evaluate the heart. Patients appreciate the fact that ultrasound, including that used in an echocardiogram, utilizes no radiation of any kind.
Through this test, your doctor can diagnose heart conditions with accuracy. If you’ve recently visited your doctor to consult about your symptoms, they may have said that they want you to have an echocardiogram.
Let’s talk about what an echocardiogram can reveal and where you can go for a checkup of your heart health.
What the Results of an Echocardiogram Can Show
Results of an echocardiogram can be in 2D or 3D, in color, or in black-and-white. Both 2D and 3D echocardiograms show the heart at work, displaying possible abnormalities in heart behavior or structure. Doctors usually order full-color echocardiograms for diagnosing blood vessel issues, such as coronary artery disease.
Blood Vessel Abnormalities
Echocardiograms can detect issues of your blood vessels in and around your heart. If you have symptoms of conditions such as atherosclerosis (hardening of the arteries) or other coronary artery diseases, your doctor may order an echocardiogram for diagnosing your condition. Atherosclerosis occurs when cholesterol builds up and clogs the arteries.
Defects in the heart’s structures that are apparent after childbirth are encompassed as congenital heart disease. An atrial septal defect, which is when there is a hole in the septum that separates the two atria in the top half of the heart, can also be present at birth.
Heart Tissue Abnormalities
An echocardiogram will show the structures of your heart so your doctor can detect abnormalities in its shape and function. In addition to diagnosing heart diseases, it is also an excellent tool for monitoring the progress of cardiac treatments.
Another use of an echocardiogram is to detect abnormalities in your pericardium, which is the saclike tissue surrounding your heart. One of these issues can be pericarditis, which is the inflammation of your pericardium. Similarly, pericardial effusion is fluid buildup in your pericardium. Both of these issues can cause pressure on the heart muscle.
Echocardiogram in the Midlands of South Carolina
Healing begins with an accurate diagnosis. If you are experiencing heart-related symptoms, consult with our healthcare providers here at SC Internal Medicine Associates & Rehabilitation. We offer state-of-the-art diagnostic services to get you started on your treatment and recovery, including echocardiograms.
If you have any questions or would like to schedule an appointment or a scan, contact our friendly staff today by calling us at (803) 749-1111 or by filling out our easy-to-use appointment request form now. We are conveniently located on Woodrow Street in Irmo, South Carolina. Let us help you get back on the road to total health and wellness!