Stress & Echo Testing
Stress testing provides information about how your heart works during physical stress. Some heart problems are easier to diagnose when your heart is working hard and beating fast.
During stress testing, you exercise (walk or run on a treadmill or pedal a stationary bike) to make your heart work hard and beat fast. Tests are done on your heart while you exercise.
You might have arthritis or another medical problem that prevents you from exercising during a stress test. If so, your doctor may give you medicine to make your heart work hard, as it would during exercise. This is called a pharmacological (FAR-ma-ko-LOJ-ih-kal) stress test.
Carotid Doppler Ultrasound is a test that uses sound waves to measure the flow of blood through the large arteries in the neck that supply blood to the brain. These arteries can narrow due to arteriosclerosis or other causes and this can lead to TIA (mini-stroke) or CVA (stroke). This test can help doctors to determine stroke risk and help determine preventive measures. The ultrasound technician will apply a jelly like substance to both sides of the neck. The test will take between 15- 30 minutes.
This allows the doctor to assess the rhythm of the heart and give an idea as to whether there are any defects in the electrical conduction of the heart. It also gives some information regarding blockages in arteries or heart attack. The patient is connected to a recording device by a series of fine cables which are attached to the chest wall using sticky electrodes. A cardiac technician performs this test, which takes approximately 5 minutes.
This is a test to see how well the heart performs when working. As the heart works harder it requires more oxygen. Oxygen is delivered to the heart muscle through 3 little arteries that run over the surface of the heart called the coronary arteries. If there is a narrowing or a blockage in the coronary arteries, this may be picked up as a change in the ECG signal on the treadmill ECG test.
This test allows the doctor to see the heart at work. Using ultrasound, the heart and valves can be seen clearly, just like in a photograph. We can therefore get a good idea of how well the pump is working, whether the heart is being damaged by blood pressure or other forms of heart disease, whether the valves are too narrowed or leaking among other things.
Before you get here:
- As you may be running on a treadmill it is advisable that you wear comfortable clothes and flat shoes.
- Please bring your health insurance (VHI, Quinn, Aviva) policy number.
- Please bring any medication that you are taking.