The stress test, called the exercise stress test, is a method to observe the heart’s operations during physical activity. It helps in understanding the response of a heart during strenuous times. Finding an excellent stress test cardiologist is crucial to prevent future risks. Heart disease is among the leading sources of death in America, which is another reason people should take these tests seriously. The heart is among the essential organs in the human body that ensures the proper functioning of a body. However, one must understand why and how a stress test works.
The purpose of the test is to learn how well the heart pumps. The procedure indicates whether the heart is receiving adequate blood supply or not. A comparison is made between people of similar age and weight and how their hearts behave during physical activities. Symptoms like discomfort and breathing shortness are reproduced and help detect underlying issues. The stress test cardiologist identifies issues of muscles or valves. Light is also shed on the electric stability of the organ and lowers heart risks. The process helps health providers to assess the overall situation and offer appropriate treatment.
Every facility has its respective rules and regulations when it comes to performing health-related tests. However, the majority of them include following instructions.
- It is advised not to consume caffeine products like tea, coffee, soda, etc., 24 hours before the examination.
- Some physicians refrain from consuming beta and calcium blockers 24-48 hours before the test.
- Do not eat anything three hours before the test. However, one can drink water.
- People with diagnoses and other severe conditions must consult their physicians beforehand. They will provide specific information in the context of medications.
- A person must wear comfortable clothes and shoes, especially during the treadmill session.
If your physician has prescribed SPECT the approximate visiting time can be around 3 to 4 hours. Two injections with minimal radioactive materials are infused and have zero adverse effects. Once the injection is infused, photos of the heart will be recorded using a gamma camera. It is known as a rest study and takes about 30 minutes. Afterward, EKG leads will be placed on the chest to monitor the heart during the procedure.
The heart will be stressed either because of physical activity or medicines. A physician or a nurse will be present to monitor everything. The test spans 10 -15, but the preparation time is lengthy. One can expect a feeling of tiredness, loss of breath, and sweating during the course. If the symptoms are extreme, convey them immediately to the physician. The procedure will be altered or stopped if found unsafe for a particular individual.
Once the process is over, you can return to your regular eating and drinking routine. The doctor will advise you to begin with your medications again. The cardiologist will review the films and explain the health condition.
A stress test detects issues like congenital heart diseases, heart failures, etc. Professionals like pilots and athletes in higher-risk occupations must also undergo this test. Individuals with heart disease also take up the procedure to assess the risks. The tests are taken in different forms ranging from exercise to nuclear.
People with a recent heart attack or ongoing chest pain must refrain from taking a stress test. It is suggested to reach out to a trusted health consultant for more accurate guidance. Before prescribing anything, they will consider your age, sex, family history, symptoms, and risk factors. People have rarely reported complexities during a stress test when done rightly. The procedure is meant to evaluate your heart health. So, reach out to a cardiologist if you are looking forward to taking the test.