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Coronary arteries are your heart's lifelines. They give the heart oxygen and nutrients by sending blood to the heart, so it can pump blood to the rest of the body. Normally, your arteries are wide and unobstructed, with blood moving freely through them. Unfortunately, it is common for our arteries to become obstructed, thus narrowing them, and lessening the amount of blood that can flow through. This condition is known as coronary artery disease or atherosclerosis.
If your doctor suspects you have coronary artery disease, he will order a cardiovascular test called an electrocardiogram (EKG). The test is simple, requires no fasting and no special preparation. The test is administered lying down and takes only about 15 minutes. The EKG monitors your heart's activity using 12-15 electrodes which a technician will place on your arms, legs and chest.
Your heart's activity will print out immediately and can be read by a cardiologist right away.
|Jennifer Mathes, Ph.D.|