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What to Know About Your Upcoming EP Study

What to Know About Your Upcoming EP Study

An electrophysiology (EP) study is a series of tests to evaluate the electrical activity in your heart. At Chinatown Cardiology, with multiple New York City locations, we offer EP studies in the office as part of your diagnostic testing for underlying heart-related conditions.

Our cardiologists have extensive training in the various tests involved in an EP study. They review the results with you and collaborate on the appropriate treatment plan.

An overview of an EP study

An EP study measures the electrical signals your heart produces to control the timing of your heartbeats. The series of tests in the study create a detailed outline of how the electrical signals move in your heart between each beat.

An EP study can provide the diagnostic information to identify the cause of arrhythmia, an irregular heart rhythm.

In some cases, our providers may recommend an EP study to assess your risk factors for sudden cardiac arrest that can lead to death.

Reasons for an EP study

An EP study may not be the initial choice for diagnosing unusual symptoms related to your heart’s electrical activity, such as:

Our providers may first request an electrocardiogram (EKG) to assess the electrical activity. However, if the EKG results don’t provide enough diagnostic information, you might need an EP study.

You may also be a candidate for an EP study before a procedure known as cardiac ablation. This treatment uses cold or heat energy to create scar tissue that blocks irregular electrical signals and helps regulate the heart’s rhythm.

Additionally, an EP study might be necessary if you have an existing heart condition that increases your risk of sudden death from a cardiac event.

What to expect during your EP study

During your EP study at Chinatown Cardiology, we help you get comfortable on an exam table before inserting an intravenous (IV) line into your arm and administering a sedative. We place electrode sensors on your skin near your chest to monitor your heartbeat throughout the study.

Your physician inserts a thin catheter into your groin and guides it into your heart. Sensors attached to the tips of the catheter send electrical signals to your heart while recording the resulting activity.

In addition to cardiac ablation, your cardiologist may complete other procedures during your study, such as:

Administering medications

We may deliver certain medications through the catheter into your heart to slow electrical activity in certain areas or to identify the heart’s reaction to the medicine.

Cardiac mapping

Cardiac mapping helps determine the best location for a cardiac ablation to correct an irregular heartbeat.

Recovery from an EP study

After your EP study, expect to rest in recovery for several hours. Our team monitors your blood pressure and heartbeat and ensures you don’t experience any unwanted complications.

Ask someone to drive you home as you recover from the sedative; it’s best to rest for the remainder of the day. If you have any discomfort at the catheter insertion site, your provider can recommend over-the-counter medications.

We contact you with the test results and let you know if you need to schedule a follow-up appointment to discuss your treatment options.

Call the Chinatown Cardiology office near you today to learn more about the diagnostic benefits of an EP study, or request a consultation online.


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