Physicians at Montefiore Einstein Center for Heart and Vascular Care will order an electrophysiological study (EP study), an invasive procedure that tests the heart's electrical system, for a number of reasons, including:
During an EP study, a cardiologist inserts a catheter that is roughly the width of a single strand of spaghetti into a vein in the patient's groin or neck. The catheter is advanced to the heart and attached to electrodes that monitor the muscle during the procedure.
First, the cardiologist takes baseline measurements of the electrical system within the heart, which controls the heartbeat. This map provides the cardiologist with information about where the arrhythmia problem likely originates.
Using controlled electrical impulses, the cardiologist will trigger an arrhythmia. By doing this, the cardiologist pinpoints the exact cause of the patient's arrhythmia and can determine whether the patient would be served best with medicine, surgical procedures or implanted devices.