It can be scary dealing with chest pain, especially with it being so closely linked to severe heart conditions. But experiencing pain on the left side of your chest doesn’t always indicate it’s a heart attack. Plus, if you’ve already undergone an ECG and everything came out normal, it’s a sign that your heart is OK.
So, what could the pain lead to? Should you be worried? Is an ECG even reliable? — Before you spiral further, take a look at this article to better understand the effects of ECG and what they mean.
What is ECG?
An ECG, or electrocardiogram, is a painless test used to detect hidden abnormalities in your heart. It records the electrical activity of your heart, focusing primarily on hypertension, irregular cholesterol levels, and valve disease.
Since most symptoms linked to chest pain are related to hypertension, ECG is the most basic testing cardiologists offer.
However, a normal ECG tracing cannot pick up on deep-rooted conditions like Costochondritis, lung disease, panic attacks, angina, etc.
Can ECG Detect Heart Blockage?
Yes. ECG scans can be used to detect blocked heart valves and blood vessels. It’s a definitive test that offers results to find an early onslaught of heart conditions. But in order to get the best results possible, a coronary angiogram is the best option.
It showcases the amount of plaque built up in your blood vessels, along with identifying the severity of these blockages and whether or not they can lead to a heart attack.
If ECG Is Normal, Is My Heart OK?
Not necessarily. While an ECG tracing is great for taking note of the irregularities within your heart rate, it doesn’t depict the severity of blocked arteries. That is to say; it doesn’t tell you how close you are to having a heart attack.
For instance, an ECG won’t report if your blood vessels have a mild plaque buildup. This might make you think you’re good to go and that your heart is OK. However, it doesn’t take long for plaque to build up further.
Fast forward to a few days, and your condition could worsen, leading to a heart attack that went undetected by an ECG. This is why cardiologists recommend getting an angiogram to check the seriousness of heart valve blockages.
What If ECG is Normal, But You Still Have Chest Pain?
If your ECG scan returned normal, yet you still have minimal chest pain, it might not be related to heart disease altogether. Instead, it could be associated with the following conditions:
- Anxiety or Panic Attacks
- Lung Disease
- Heart Failure
Want To Get An ECG Scan?
If you’re experiencing frequent ups and downs in your heart rate, you may require an ECG tracing. However, before you do, it’s essential to keep in mind that if your ECG is normal, it doesn’t necessarily mean your heart is OK.
Consult a cardiologist for further advice if you continue feeling bouts of chest pain, despite your ECG results being normal. For more information, contact Family Diagnostic Clinic at (281) 351-6800. You can schedule an appointment online or drop by our clinic at 27721 Tomball Pkwy Ste #200, Tomball, TX 77377. We’re just around the corner from MS Pharmacy.