An EKG or ECG (electrocardiogram) test is performed by a health professional and interpreted by your physician. The test begins with the technician attaching the leads of an EKG machine to a patients body while they flat on a bed or table. A small amount of conductive gel is applied to 6 predefined areas of the chest. The leads are then applied to the skin and the test begins. The EKG machine tracks the electrical impulses of the heart and the test typically takes about 5 minutes and is painless (some say it can be uncomfortable). In some cases hair may have to be removed to obtain optimal contact between the leads and the skin of the patient.