An electrocardiogram (ECG) is a simple test that can be used to check your heart's rhythm and electrical activity.

Sensors attached to the skin are used todetect the electrical signals produced by your heart each time it beats.

These signals are recorded by a machine and are looked atby a doctor to see if they're unusual.

An ECGmay be requested by a heart specialist (cardiologist) or any doctor who thinks you might have a problem with your heart, including your GP.

The test will usually be carried out at a hospital or clinic by a trained specialist called a cardiac physiologist,although it can sometimes be done at your GP surgery.

Despite having asimilar name, an ECG isn't the same as an echocardiogram, which is a scan of the heart.

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Medically Reviewed by a doctor on 24 Nov 2016