NJ Cardiovascular Institute
Kunal Patel, MD, FACC
Board Certified Cardiologist & Varicose Vein Specialist located in Secaucus, Elizabeth, Paramus, and Lakewood, NJ
Heart disease is the number one killer of both men and women in the United States. Kunal Patel, MD, at NJ Cardiovascular Institute in Elizabeth and Secaucus, New Jersey, is a board-certified cardiologist who takes a proactive and preventive approach to heart disease. He uses noninvasive tools, like an echocardiogram, to assess heart health and risk. To learn more about echocardiograms, call the office nearest you or request an appointment online today.
Echocardiogram Q & A
What is an echocardiogram?
An echocardiogram is a safe and noninvasive diagnostic test that uses sound waves to generate images of your heart. During the test, Dr. Patel can evaluate how well your heart functions and view the structures within your heart to confirm or rule out various heart conditions.
To get the best possible picture of your heart health, Dr. Patel may combine your echocardiogram with a Doppler ultrasound, which is a special diagnostic test that captures images of how your blood flows through your heart. Like the echocardiogram, the Doppler ultrasound is noninvasive.
Why would I need an echocardiogram?
Dr. Patel may recommend an echocardiogram to confirm or rule out a heart condition. He may recommend an echocardiogram in order to:
- Detect congenital heart defects
- Evaluate your heart valves
- Evaluate the chambers of your heart
- Look for cardiac issues that may explain your symptoms
- Assess the effectiveness of your cardiac treatment
- Monitor cardiac health over time
Because an echocardiogram is safe and noninvasive, Dr. Patel may recommend a series of tests to monitor your heart health and function.
What can I expect during an echocardiogram?
Dr. Patel performs your echocardiogram right in the office. You don’t need to do anything special to prepare for your test, and you can eat, drink, and take your medication as you normally would, unless he directs otherwise.
Before the test begins, we ask you to remove your shirt and then lie down on the exam table. Electrodes are attached to your chest to monitor your heartbeat during your test. A special gel is applied to your chest to allow the ultrasound wand to slide easily over your skin, and then the imaging begins.
You shouldn’t feel any discomfort during your echocardiogram, and it takes about 40 minutes or so for the entire procedure. There’s no downtime following your echocardiogram, and you can go right back to your usual activities afterward.
Dr. Patel reviews the results of your echocardiogram and develops an individualized treatment plan based on his findings.
An echocardiogram is a safe and simple test that provides Dr. Patel with valuable information about your heart and risk of disease. To learn more about the test, call NJ Cardiovascular Institute or request an appointment online today.