Electrocardiography is an important test that records the electrical impulses of the heart. It assesses many aspects of heart health, including:

  • Heart function.

  • Heart rhythm.

  • Heart muscle thickness.

Electrocardiography can be done as a routine part of a physical exam. It can also be done to evaluate symptoms such as severe chest pain and heart palpitations.


  • Electrocardiography is simple, safe, and painless. It takes only a few minutes to perform. No electricity goes through your body during the procedure.

  • You will be asked to remove your clothes from the waist up and lie on your back for the test.

  • Sticky patches (electrodes) will be placed on your chest, arms, and legs. The electrodes will be attached by wires to the electrocardiography machine.

  • You will be asked to relax and lie still for a few seconds while the electrocardiography machine records the electrical activity of your heart.


  • If electrocardiography is part of a routine physical exam, you may return to normal activities as told by your caregiver.

  • Your caregiver or a heart doctor (cardiologist) will interpret the recording.

  • The test result may not be available during your visit. If your test result is not back during the visit, make an appointment with your caregiver to find out the result. It is important for you to follow up on your test result.