Electrocardiography is an important monitoring process used in veterinary practice that is used to determine the rate and rhythm of your pet’s heart. It is very much like an ECG performed on human patients and is completely non-invasive so your pet should not experience any discomfort. We are pleased to offer comprehensive electrocardiography services here at our offices in Carmel, IN.
What are electrocardiography services used for?
Electrocardiograms are usually recommended when your veterinarian has reason to be concerned about the function or health of your pet’s heart. Some types of medication can have an effect on the heart, and regular monitoring may be recommended. Electrocardiograms are also used to identify heartbeat abnormalities (known as arrhythmias) and enlargement of the heart, which is a common finding with many heart diseases. It is important to note that while an electrocardiogram can detect many issues with the heart if your pet is being affected by an intermittent disturbance in his heart, the electrocardiogram may not detect this during a routine exam. Instead, it may be necessary for your pet to undergo home monitoring, during which an ECG machine is strapped to your pet for an extended period of time to pick up those isolated disturbances.
What you can expect to happen in your pet’s electrocardiogram
It can be an anxious time for any owner watching their precious pet undergo a medical assessment, even if it is non-invasive. Nevertheless, an electrocardiogram is extremely straightforward. A series of electrodes are placed onto parts of your pet’s body so that they can monitor his heart. Typically, there are four electrodes, and these are placed on the fore and hind limbs. These are then connected to the ECG using color-coded cables.
During the electrocardiogram, it will be necessary to keep your pet as still and calm as possible as movements can cause discrepancies in your pet’s results. The entire electrocardiogram can usually be performed in just a couple of minutes, something which most pets tolerate fairly comfortably. Although it is possible for some pets to have sedation for an electrocardiogram, it is something that most vets avoid wherever possible since the process is so short, and some sedatives can influence heart rhythm and cause an incorrect result.
If you would like more information on our pet electrocardiography service, or to schedule an appointment for your furbaby with our experienced veterinary team, please contact our clinic in Carmel, IN today.