Echocardiograms allow doctors to observe the heart muscles in heart attack victims as well as determine the heart health of unborn babies, according to Healthline. Additionally, echocardiograms diagnose blood clots in the heart and fluid buildup in the sac around the heart, as well as monitor heart valve functioning.
An echocardiogram may be necessary if a doctor suspects congenital heart defects in an embryo or poor functioning of heart valves or chambers in adults, states Mayo Clinic. There are several types of echocardiogram, including transthoracic echocardiograms, transesophageal echocardiograms, Doppler echocardiograms and stress echocardiograms. Each type utilizes different techniques depending on the information the doctor requires.