July 1, 2022 - Parul Saini, Webmedy Team
Your heart works hard to power your body, beating 100,000 times a day on average. An ECG machine, also called an EKG machine, can quickly and effectively measure the rhythm and strength of those beats. So, if your heart experiences abnormal activity, it's important to monitor it regularly. With a home EKG device, you can track your heart's health with confidence.
Subscribe to Webmedy Youtube Channel for Latest Videos
Electrocardiography is the process of producing an electrocardiogram (ECG or EKG), which is a recording of the heart's electrical activity, a graph of voltage versus time of the heart's electrical activity using electrodes placed on the skin.
ECG or EKG machine, also known as an Electrocardiograph machine uses a non-invasive diagnostic test that evaluates the heart's electrical system to assess the health and functioning of the heart.
Each beat of the heart is triggered by an electrical impulse, normally generated from special cells in the upper right chamber of the heart. The cells in the heart go through depolarization and repolarization as the heart beats. The ECG machine records these electrical signals by attaching flat electrodes to the outer surface of the skin and a graph of the electrical activity inside the heart is generated.
Doctors use several types of ECG machines to check for a variety of cardiac (heart) or pulmonary (lung) conditions.
The Holter monitor is a type of ECG machine used to monitor the ECG tracing continuously for 24 hours or longer. Electrodes (small, plastic patches) are placed at certain locations on the chest, arms, and legs. When the electrodes are connected to an ECG machine by lead wires, the electrical activity of the heart is measured, interpreted, and printed out for the physician's information and further interpretation.
This portable device is similar to a Holter monitor, but it records only at certain times for a few minutes at a time. You can wear it longer than a Holter monitor, typically 30 days. You generally push a button when you feel symptoms. Some devices automatically record when an irregular rhythm is detected.
You can use a heart rate monitor fitness tracking device or a fitness smartwatch to determine the health of your heart. Rather than placing electrodes on your skin, these devices or watches require you to hold your finger on the device's digital crown, waiting for 30 seconds. Once you are done, the device will let you know whether the trace captured a normal heartbeat, called a sinus rhythm, or an abnormal heartbeat.
The biggest difference between regular ECG machines and Wearable ECG monitors is that unlike regular ECG Machines, which use 12 leads, the wearable ECG monitor uses just one. In the simplest terms, the 12 lead is taking lots of readings about your heart and the single lead is taking just one.
Atrial fibrillation is a common and potentially deadly heart condition that can cause irregular and abnormally fast heartbeat. It is intermittent, which makes it difficult to detect.
Unlike getting an ECG at the hospital, you can monitor your heart throughout the day using a portable ECG machine. Taking a 30-second ECG reading whenever you feel symptoms can be useful.
Health professionals can recommend using a portable ECG machine for individuals suffering from paroxysmal Atrial fibrillation, which comes and goes. That way, if you are feeling signs and symptoms, you can take your ECG when you are experiencing symptoms.
Long QT Syndrome (LQTS) is a condition that can cause an irregular heartbeat and could lead to fainting and sudden death. Like Atrial fibrillation, one of the reasons portable ECG devices are useful in detecting a condition like LQTS is that it�s often brought on through exercise and stress. Being able to take a reading when you are at the gym or exercising could be a life-saver.
An ST-elevation myocardial infarction (STEMI) is a serious heart attack that occurs when one of the heart's major arteries is blocked. Portable ECG machines are effective in identifying STEMI and can be life savers.
Below are some factors that you may wish to consider when looking for an at-home ECG machine:
The main objective of the Portable ECG Machine is to indicate the condition of the heart as per its electrical activities. Thus, the key selection criterion is to find one that produces accurate results within its operating range reliably and consistently. This ensures that the course of action after measurement of the heart's functioning will be the right one to counteract any abnormalities/ fluctuations detected.
Some ECG monitors come with Bluetooth connectivity and can connect to smartphone devices to track the user's data and readings.
This allows the user to save previous readings, and it can be useful if they want to show the results to a doctor.
If a person intends to use an ECG monitor while traveling, they should check its dimensions to ensure that it is easy to carry around.
Most devices take 30 seconds to take one reading.
Some monitors allow continuous monitoring. These are the ones that you should prefer for a better idea about the heart's overall functionality.
Having more control over your health at home is going to become more widespread over time. Devices like portable ECG Machines will play a major role in improving health and saving lives in the coming years. Those who wish to monitor their heart health at home or while traveling can make use of portable ECG machines. As there are many models from different manufacturers in the market to choose from, check the features they offer and choose the one that best suits your needs.