2D Echocardiography or 2D Echo is a heart test in which ultrasound technique is used to take pictures of heart. It shows a cross sectional view of the beating heart, chambers, valves and the major blood vessels of heart. Doppler is a special element of 2D Echo test that assesses blood flow in the heart. Cardiologist recommends 2D Echo test for people who experience an abnormal pain in chest area, breathlessness, blood pressure etc.
2D Echo test is done by a cardiologist. A colorless gel is applied to the chest area. Patient is asked to sleep. The cardiologist moves the transducer across the various parts of chest to get specific/desired views of the heart.
The cardiologist gives instructions to the patient such as breathing slowly or holding breath. This helps in get superior quality images of heart functions. The images are viewed on the monitor and recorded on paper, video or DVD. The cardiologist later assess and analyze the recordings deeply.
2D Echo is very crucial test to detect malfunctions of heart such as-
• Size of the chambers, volume and the thickness of the heart walls.
• Heart pumping functions such as normal or reduced to a mild/severe degree.
• Heart Valve function – structure, thickness and leakage of heart’s valves.
• Volume status
• Pericardial effusion (fluid in the pericardium – the sac that surrounds the heart),
.congenital heart disease,
.blood clots or tumors, abnormal elevation of pressure within the lungs etc.
2D Echo test is done within 5-15 minutes. It can also take much longer time in case of many heart issues.
How safe is echocardiography?
2D Echo test is completely safe and has no side effects on the heart or other parts of the body. Ultrasound waves which are emitted by 2D Echo are not risky to human body. Also there is no need for any type of special preparations for the patients.