What Heart Problems Can an ECG Detect?

Clinic cardiology heart rhythm and pulse test closeup. Your heart is the most important muscle in your body but the most difficult to monitor. You can exercise your arms and watch the muscles grow, but you have no idea whether your heart is in good shape.

Luckily, Electrocardiograms (sometimes called ECGs or EKGs) can track your heart activity to aid in preventative care. They can detect:

  • Heart attacks
  • Coronary artery disease
  • Arrhythmias
  • Enlarged hearts
  • Heart defects
  • Heart failure
  • And more

Read on to learn how this procedure can save your life.

Heart Problems ECGs Can Detect

Below are some of the heart problems that EKGs can detect.

Heart Failure

When your heart fails to pump enough blood throughout your body, you will go into heart failure. Blood and oxygen distribution will slow, and you can become fatigued and breathless.

An EKG can warn you and your doctors of the early stages of heart failure. Once you have a diagnosis, your doctors can work with you to reverse the damage.

Coronary Artery Disease

CAD is the leading cause of heart attacks. When your arteries are blocked, blood flow to the heart is restricted, and a lack of blood or oxygen entering the heart causes heart muscle cells to die.

Most people do not know they have CAD until the artery is so severely damaged that symptoms begin to appear. If you detect CAD early enough using an ECG, you can make necessary lifestyle changes to stop or slow the progression of the disease. 


Heart arrhythmias occur when the heart:

  • Beats too quickly (tachycardia)
  • Beats too slowly (bradycardia)
  • Skips beats

These can contribute to heart attacks, strokes, and cardiac arrests. 

Doctors can detect arrhythmias before they cause a problem by monitoring your heart’s electrical signals. Your doctor can prescribe medications and walk you through necessary lifestyle changes to prevent serious medical issues.

Heart Attack

Heart attacks occur when blood clots grow so large that the coronary artery can’t send blood to the heart. They can cause damage to the heart muscle and may be fatal.

ECGs can detect the early stages of a heart attack, allowing doctors to keep you safe. They can prescribe medications that restore blood flow as quickly as possible and prevent heart damage. 


Don’t wait to call your doctor until the symptoms start. Prevent irreversible heart damage by calling Premier Heart and Vein Care, located in San Luis Obispo, at805-540-3333.

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