An echocardiogram is an ultrasound (also known as a “sonogram”) of the heart. It is entirely noninvasive. High quality images of the heart muscle, its strength, and its valves are obtained. Echocardiography is used to evaluate the cause of heart murmurs heard on physical exam, to evaluate and make treatment decisions involving abnormal heart valves, to evaluate chest pain and shortness of breath, to screen for old heart attacks, in the evaluation and treatment of high blood pressure, and for screening in people with a family history of sudden cardiac death.