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How to Read ECG Heart Monitor? What’s the Heart Attack Curve Like?

You must be familiar with ECG, as it is one of the most common medical tests for initial diagnosis. The results obtained from the ECG heart monitor are in the form of curves. Understanding them is a bit tricky. With the help of these curves, different diseases such as heart attack (Myocardial infarction), hypertension, and other heart diseases can be diagnosed.


Suppose you don’t know how to read an ECG heart monitor. Stay with us as this article will guide you through the ECG heart monitor reading and help you maintain your health. 


 How to read ECG?
 How to read ECG?

What does an ECG show? How to read ECG?


Before going into detail, let me introduce ECG. Short for Electrocardiogram, ECG is a diagnostic tool used to access the electrical and muscular function of the heart. According to American Heart Association, ECG is used to measure the rhythm and heartbeat rate of the heart by placing electrodes on the skin. Moreover, with the help of an ECG, evidence of blood flow to the heart can be measured. Around ten electrodes are required to produce 12 electrical views of the heart (An electrode is placed on each leg and arm, and six electrodes are placed on the chest). The signal from all electrodes is measured, and a curve is plotted. The printed results from the test are knowns as Electrocardiogram. 


Even though ECG is a comparatively simple test, interpreting the results and graphs requires some technicalities, but it can be learned. Making it one of your routine check-ups, ECG can help you improve your health. 


On the ECG graph, Voltage is shown on the vertical or Y axis, and it is measured in millivolts (mV), and one the x-axis time is plotted. A deflection of 10mm on a standard ECG paper represents a voltage of 1 mV. The standard paper moves 250mm in one second. The variation in the electric signal is shown in the form of waves. 


Heart rate can be calculated by counting the number of large squares between QRS on the ECG curve and dividing 300 by the number. P wave on a curve is used to determine whether a person is in sinus rhythm or not.


What is a normal ECG? 


There are three types of waves, namely P wave (when atria are contracting), QRS Complex (When ventricles contract), and T wave (When ventricles relax). The P wave is followed by a short delay known as the atrioventricular (AV) node, which shows electrical depolarization. This node is shown in the form of a straight horizontal line on ECG paper, called PR interval. There should be a pattern of these waves, and any irregularity is a sign of any health issue. I.e., if P waves in the graph are absent, it is an indication of Atrial fibrillation


A normal heart has the following readings: 

Normal heart rate: 60-100bpm

Tachycardia: > 100 bpm

Bradycardia: <60bpm


A normal ECG curve from 12 electrodes:

Figure showing normal ECG curve
Figure showing normal ECG curve

How to identify heart attack through ECG?


Normal ECG obtained from ECG heart monitor looks like a smooth curve. The distance between each spike is almost constant. Each spike represents one whole heartbeat, the distance between spikes represents your heart rate. If there are irregular gaps and clusters of spikes, there might be a problem with your heart (It might be associated with a heart attack). If the spikes are too close together, the person shows signs of Rapid heartbeat/ tachycardia. 


What disease needs long-term regular ECG monitoring? 


The following is the list of some of the common disease which needs long term regular ECG monitoring


1.High blood pressure

2.Chest pain

3.Shortness of breath

4.Heavy heartbeat

5.Enlargement of Heart

6.Abnormal rhythm 


Principle of ECG test? 


The principle behind the working of an ECG heart monitor is: Like other muscles, Cardio muscles or heart muscles contract in response to any electric depolarization of the muscle cells. It is the simulation of any muscle that alters the electric potential of a muscle fiber. 


What is an ECG machine ?


What is an ECG machine? ECG heart monitor is used to track the heart rhythm by recording the signals from electric electrodes, and it plots them on paper. The machine will store the reading that can be accessed by the doctor to diagnose any disease. The term ECG or Electrocardiogram was coined by Einthoven in 1893. Willem Einthoven is considered the founder of the ECG machine, and in 1924 he was awarded the prestigious Nobel prize in Physiology. In 1901, he invented a new string galvanometer with a very high sensitivity used in electrocardiography. The weight of the machine was 600 pounds. The machine was made available for clinical use. Many improvements were made to the machine; thus, today, the machine is in the most refined form.




Viatom ECG recorder with AI analysis 


Once there was a time when the ECG recorder was 600 pounds, Viatom presents you with its latest ECG heart monitor weighing only 18g. Yes, you heard that right. It is one of the best ECG heart monitors that you can get on the market. The machine can be used to conduct ecg at home. It has a battery run time of 72 hours, and it offers an expected service life of 5 years. With the help of Viatom’s ECG heart monitor, you can get ECG reading faster, accurately, and more comprehensively. The device is CE certified, and FDA approved



About Viatom


Viatom is a leading medical equipment manufacturing and distribution company, and we are especially known for our OEM (Original Equipment Manufacturer) services. Viatom helps original equipment manufacturers create reliable equipment, providing customers with consistent performance and lasting value. We are a leading global provider of OEM solutions in home medical devices. We have been deeply involved in different medical fields for many years, and we continue to innovate and develop mobile medical equipment. With years of experience, we believe that we can devise the most creative solution for you. Our wearable ECG devices are trusted by doctors and patients from all corners of the world.