Purpose of the Test

This test uses high frequency sound waves to determine the size, motion and function of many structures of the heart.

Patient Instructions


  • Take prescribed medicines unless told not to by your doctor.


  • Wear normal street clothes.

The Test

  • Once in the test room, you will lie down on a table or bed. We will place three electrodes on your chest to monitor your heart during the test.
  • We will place a probe on your chest. Sound waves will bounce off the structures of your heart and create a picture on a video screen. You will feel nothing during the test except slight pressure when the probe is placed firmly against the skin.
  • We will take several pictures of your heart. When done we give the information to the doctor for review.
  • The test time varies, but it often takes 20 to 40 minutes.

*If your echo includes a bubble study, with or without a transcranial doppler (TCD) exam, we will need to place an IV for the saline injections. Test time will be 60 to 90 minutes.

If you have any questions, please call CentraCare Heart & Vascular Center at 320-656-7020 or 800-448-3455.