ECG (heart trace)

A 12-lead ECG – or electrocardiogram - is a simple and useful test which records the rhythm and electrical activity of your heart. Small sticky patches called "electrodes" will be put onto your arms, legs and chest. These are connected to an ECG recording machine which picks up the electrical signals that make your heart beat. The test will only take a few minutes and is painless. What can an ECG show? An ECG can detect problems you may have with your heart rhythm. It can help doctors tell if you are having an acute heart attack or can sometimes show if you’ve had a heart attack in the past. Sometimes an ECG can indicate if your heart is enlarged or thickened.