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About This Video

Your test will be done in a doctor’s office or hospital by a specially trained technologist. No special preparations are necessary, and the test usually takes about 30 to 60 minutes.

The test will take place in a darkened room so your technologist can see the test monitor better. Before your test, you’ll undress from the waist up and put on a hospital gown, then lie down on an exam table.

Your technologist will place sticky patches called electrodes on your chest to monitor your heart rhythm through an electrocardiogram, or EKG. Next, your technologist will place gel on your chest and press a small device called a transducer against your chest over your heart, moving it back and forth. The transducer picks up and sends out sound waves, which travel to the test monitor and show pictures of your heart.

For most of the test, you’ll lie on your left side. You may need to lie on your back, and to hold your breath for a few seconds at a time. At certain points during the test, you may hear a whooshing sound, which is the sound of blood moving through your heart.