Echocardiography: is the basic, imaging method of examining the heart and blood vessels using ultrasound. On the screen, we obtain an image resulting from the reflection of ultrasonic waves from the examined structures inside the body. In a non-invasive and safe way for the patient, it enables imaging of the anatomical structures of the heart, valve movement, assessment of the contractility of the heart muscle and blood flow. The examination also allows to visualize large blood vessels, which include the aorta, pulmonary arteries and main veins.
The most important indications for the examination are:
- assessment of the contractility of the heart muscle: after a heart attack, interventional procedures in stable coronary disease (angioplasty, aortic-coronary bypass surgery (so-called “bypass”), myocarditis,
- assessment of heart valve function: narrowing or regurgitation,
- assessment of congenital heart defects,
- assessment of dilatation and dysfunction of large vessels: (e.g. aneurysm of the ascending aorta, dilatation of the main veins, pulmonary artery),
- follow-up in all patients with heart failure: regular monitoring is necessary to prevent worsening of failure and reduce the risk of more frequent hospitalizations,
- evaluation in patients with cardiac cardiomyopathy and other acquired defects,
- assessment before cardiological and non-cardiological procedures (e.g. before surgery),
- assessment of the correct heart function in people practicing sports, including professional athletes,
- assessment during oncological treatment (before surgery, before, during and after chemotherapy and radio therapy),
- the test is also needed in the diagnosis of pregnant women.