As a parent, choosing a healthcare provider for your child's heart is important. The Hospitals of Providence Children's Hospital offers a comprehensive range of cardiovascular services, including electrocardiograms, to help diagnose and treat heart conditions of young patients with compassionate care.

Delivering Safe and Advanced Care for Little Hearts in El Paso

At The Hospitals of Providence Children's Hospital, caring for little hearts is our passion and priority. We're always striving to find new and better ways to treat our young patients with heart conditions to help improve their quality of life. Regardless of your child's heart journey, we're here with innovative and specialized cardiovascular care close to home.

We offer collaborative care through an experienced and dedicated multidisciplinary team of pediatric cardiologists, surgeons and staff who can perform lifesaving cardiovascular care services that aim to prevent, detect and treat heart conditions.

While we offer minimally invasive cardiovascular care options and procedures, we usually start with conservative, noninvasive options to treat a range of heart conditions as the first line of treatment. From cardiothoracic surgery to routine screenings and interventional cardiology—we're here for you and your child with exceptional and compassionate care.

Fill out our request referral form or call 833-225-8751, and we'll connect you to our dedicated staff to provide helpful information about our pediatric cardiologists and services and assist you in making an appointment.

What Is the Purpose of Electrocardiography?

When your heart beats, an electrical impulse or wave travels through the heart, causing the muscle to squeeze and pump blood from the heart. An electrocardiogram (EKG or ECG) test is a simple and painless procedure that measures the heart's electrical activity.

An electrocardiogram test procedure helps heart doctors (cardiologists) monitor the strength, rate and regularity of heartbeats, the size and position of the heart's chambers and detect any damage. Abnormal electrocardiogram results can be a sign of heart disease. Computerized electrocardiograms are used with other tests, such as echocardiograms and thallium scans, to help produce more accurate heart images.

Despite having similarities, an electrocardiogram differs from an echocardiogram, a type of ultrasound scan.

Types of Electrocardiograms:

Resting EKG – carried out while your child is lying down in a comfortable position
Stress or Exercise EKG – carried out while your child is on an exercise bike or treadmill
Ambulatory EKG (also called Holter monitor) – an electrocardiogram where electrodes connect to a small portable machine strapped on your child's waist for home monitoring

How Do You Do an EKG on a Child?

The electrocardiogram test procedure generally involves attaching small sticky sensors called electrodes to your child's shoulders, chest, wrists and ankles. Wires connect the electrodes to a computer that records your child's heartbeats. The heart's electrical activity is displayed on the computer's monitor and printed on special graph paper. Your child may have to get up and exercise for a while as part of the test. A physician will then review the printout and interpret the results. The test only lasts a few minutes and has no associated risks.

The graph shows multiple waves reflecting the activity of the heart and read as follows:

Heart rate – the number of waves per minute on the graph
Heart rhythm – the distances between these waves

Additionally, the shapes of the waves show how well the heart's electrical impulses are working, the size of the heart and how well the individual parts of the heart are working together. At the same time, the consistency of the waves provides information about any heart damage.

Why Would a Child Need an EKG?

An electrocardiogram helps evaluate signs and symptoms that indicate heart problems, including:

  • Chest pain
  • Rapid heartbeat
  • Arrhythmia (racing, fluttering or uneven heartbeats)
  • Shortness of breath
  • Dizziness
  • Fatigue

Other reasons to get an electrocardiogram:

  • Your child has had a heart attack or other heart problems in the past
  • You have a family history of heart disease
  • Your health care provider may want to check your child's heart health before a scheduled surgery or procedure
  • Your child has a pacemaker
  • Your child is taking medicine for heart disease

An electrocardiogram may help diagnose several problems with the heart, including:

  • Reduced blood flow to the heart muscle
  • Irregular heartbeats
  • Problems with the heart not beating forcefully enough
  • Enlargement of the heart
  • Congenital disabilities
  • Diseases of the heart's valves

The electrocardiogram recording not only shows what the heart is doing at the time of the test but also indicates problems in the past, such as a previous heart attack. A previous EKG can be used as a comparison to help detect problems.

Pre-register Your Visit with Us

We know you want to be as prepared as possible for your child's hospital visit and care. Get compassionate care and advanced treatment for your little one without filling out your medical and insurance forms on the day of your visit. Please click here to pre-register at The Hospitals of Providence Children's Hospital.

Insurances Accepted and Payment Plan Options

Whether your child's heart condition requires immediate surgical care, monitoring or a personalized rehabilitation program, we will provide you with all the information you need upfront, including financial obligations, to help you decide on your child's healthcare.

We work with various insurance providers, so your child can get quality care immediately in every stage of their journey to better heart health. The Hospitals of Providence Children's Hospital offers flexible payment plans and convenient bill payment options. Our payment plans cover most treatments and procedures.

Call us at 888-252-8189 or visit our patient financial resources page to learn about our insurance, billing, payment plans, pricing information and estimates. Please contact your insurance carrier directly if you have questions about your child's covered services and benefits. Watch this video or call 833-850-5053 to learn how we make healthcare more affordable for you and your family.

Find a Pediatric Cardiologist in El Paso, TX

If you're looking for emergency care for your child's heart condition or a partner in caring for your child's heart health, The Hospitals of Providence Children's Hospital commits to helping you make it possible to get the care you need for your child. Let's discuss ways to help you manage your child's heart health. If you're looking for an experienced pediatric cardiologist El Paso has to offer, call 833-225-8751 or find a doctor here near your location. If it's an emergency, please call 911 or go to the nearest emergency room.

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