A stress test, also known as an exercise test, is done to determine how well the patient’s heart works while the patient is physically active. It also helps our doctor in Fort Myers determine how much exercise the patient should undertake if they are embarking on a new exercise regime or undergoing physical therapy.
What Happens During the Test?
A technician will attach electrodes, which are sticky patches, to the patient’s body. The electrodes have cords that plug into an electrocardiogram (EKG) machine that records the heart’s activity. It can detect how fast the heart is beating, whether it has a regular or irregular rhythm, and how strong the electrical signals passing through the heart are.
During the stress test, the patient will exercise for a set amount of time. It is important to follow the technician’s instructions in order to ensure a successful test. Stress tests are safe. They are no more dangerous than jogging or walking up a hill. There is always a medical professional on hand during the entire test.
Who Should Get a Stress Test?
Our doctor will usually recommend a stress test for somebody showing symptoms of heart disease like chest pain or shortness of breath. We generally won’t recommend a stress test for somebody who is apparently healthy and not showing any symptoms. However, it all depends on the unique situation.
Our doctor will also recommend a stress test for somebody who has recently survived a heart attack or been diagnosed with heart disease to determine the amount and type of exercise they can safely do. Similarly, if a patient with known heart disease has been following an exercise program, our doctor may have them take a stress test to check their progress.
If somebody has trouble breathing but does not have chest pain, our doctor will likely have them undergo a stress test to rule out any possible heart problems. This is a great tool that we can use at our office in Fort Myers to get important information regarding your heart health.
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