An echocardiogram, or echo, is a test that uses sound waves (ultrasound) to create a moving picture of the heart. The pictures are much more detailed than x-ray images and the test involves no radiation exposure.
There are two primary methods of performing echos. The most common method is performed by passing sound waves through your chest wall. This is done in the same way fetal images are obtained in pregnant women. These transthoracic echos can be performed while your heart is at rest or when your heart is working after either exercising on a treadmill or receiving a medication that simulates exercise. The procedure is painless. In some cases, an echocardiogram must be performed in a hospital setting by inserting the ultrasound probe into your esophagus. Our cardiologist can explain the specific type of test that is right for you.
The Heart Center of Southern Arizona was the first facility in Southern Arizona to be accredited by the Intersocietal Commission for the Accreditation of Echocardiography Laboratories (ICAEL). We voluntarily submit to a review of our daily operations. This is a demonstration of a commitment to quality care. Other accredited institutions include the Mayo Clinic, Cleveland Clinic, and Stanford University.
Our echocardiology services include:
- Resting echocardiograms
- Exercise stress echocardiograms
- Dobutamine stress echocardiograms
- Transesophageal echocardiograms