When you feel worn out or quickly exhausted with any type of activity, your doctor may recommend stress testing to evaluate how your heart performs. Stress tests also help diagnose coronary artery disease (CAD) and irregular heart rhythm (arrhythmia).
Types of Stress Testing
To assess your specific situation, your Cone Health Medical Group cardiac care team may recommend one or more types of stress testing, such as:
- Cardiopulmonary exercise testing (CPET) – Helps determine how well your heart, lungs and muscles work together; noninvasive test to monitor heart activity, oxygen intake, carbon dioxide production and breathing patterns
- Exercise stress testing – Records blood pressure and the heart’s electrical activity via electrocardiogram (EKG, ECG) during exercise; includes walking on a motorized treadmill as its speed and incline gradually increase
- Nuclear medicine stress testing (heart scan or cardiac perfusion scan) – Uses a special camera and a trackable, intravenous (IV) medication—such as Cardiolite—to capture two sets of images of your heart; measures blood flow while your heart rests and while it’s stressed by exercise or by the IV medication to help determine the cause of angina (chest pain) or the presence of coronary artery disease (CAD); performed in CHMG’s Greensboro office
What to Expect
Because you’ll walk on a treadmill for a period of time during the test, you need to wear comfortable clothes and walking shoes. Ask your doctor for any other requirements of the test you’re scheduled to take.