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Stress Echo

A Stress Echo is used to help the physician diagnose any potential heart arrhythmias, structural or functional cardiac abnormalities. The test is commonly requested for coronary disease.

Before showing up to the office for the test:

  • Do not apply any oils or lotions to the skin 24 hrs before the test
  • Make sure you are wearing non restrictive clothing to do exercise in and bring or wear running shoes
  • Make sure you withhold any medications as directed
  • Bring all medications you are taking, or an up to date prepared list of all medications you are taking
  • Do not eat a heavy meal before the test

During the test:

  • A registered Ultrasound Technician and Cardiology Technologist will be performing your stress echo test
  • You will be hooked up to a 12 lead heart monitoring system which will monitor your heart rhythm and rate throughout the duration of your stress test
  • A baseline electrocardiogram and blood pressure will be taken at the beginning of your stress test
  • A physician will briefly asses you before the test to ensure your safety
  • A small amount of special sound conductive gel will be applied to your chest and an ultrasound of your heart will be done (the gel may have a cool feeling to the skin)
  • You will then be put on the treadmill you will start out at a slow walk on a slight incline and the treadmill will increase slightly in speed and incline every 3 minutes
  • This increase of incline and treadmill speed will continue until a specific heart rate is reached
  • When the required heart rate is reached the treadmill will be stopped
  • You will then be asked to return quickly to the bed to lie down and another ultrasound will be performed on your heart while it’s beating quickly
  • You will then be monitored for a period of 5 minutes or more to ensure your safety

If at any time during the test you feel unwell, please let the Ultrasound Technician, Cardiology Technologist or Nurse performing your test know. Symptoms may include Chest Pain or Tightness, Shortness of Breath, Dizziness or just plain Fatigue.