How is cardiomyopathy diagnosed?
The diagnosis of cardiomyopathy is not complicated. It is often clear from a patient’s description of his symptoms, the results of physical examinations, and the results of a chest x-ray, echocardiogram, and electrocardiogram.
The diagnosis begins with medical history and signs. Usually patients have the symptoms of fatigue, breathlessness, and chest discomfort. Medical history and social history, like smoking and drinking, are also important in diagnosis.
In physical examinations, the doctor records your heart rate, blood pressure, oxygen saturation and respiratory rate to see if they stay in the normal range.
With an electrocardiogram (EKG), a screening test, your doctor can look for electronical abnormalities in your heart. Damage caused by previous heart attack and ventricular hypertrophy can be detected.
An ultrasound of the heart (echocardiogram) can help the doctor to see if the wall motion function, the integrity of the heart valves, and the ventricle ejection fraction are good.
Chest X-ray may be used in diagnosis. It can reveal an enlarged or abnormal heart shape. The ray can also detect excess fluid accumulation within the lungs.
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