What is a Stress Echo?
A stress echo is an imaging test that uses ultrasound to show how well your heart functions during the stress of exercise. This test is usually used to diagnose Coronary Heart Disease.
An echocardiogram is first performed at rest and then following mild to moderate level of exercise on the treadmill or using a supine bicycle or Dobutamine which simulates exercise.
How is it performed?
A technologist will explain to you about the test, take a brief medical history. Your Blood pressure, Heart rate and EKG will be monitored before, during and after the test.
You will be asked to sign a consent form.
Female patients will be given a gown with opening in the front.
Adhesive electrodes will be placed on your chest to monitor the ECG.
Sometimes the test warrants the use of contrast agent to improve the image quality. The technologist or nurse will insert an IV line into a vein in one of your arms to administer the contrast.
The sonographer then applies gel on the ultrasound probe, positions it on the left side of your chest to take images of your heart at rest. Then pictures are taken again following exercise on the treadmill.
You will be monitored through the test.
The test takes anywhere from 60minutes to 75 minutes
The results are then interpreted by the doctor and sent to your family Physician.
Stop taking Viagra, Cialis and Levitra 48 hrs prior to the test.
Do not eat or drink or smoke 2 hours prior to the test
Take your usual medications unless otherwise directed by your physician.
Wear Comfortable shoes and clothes.
After your test
There are no precautions after the test.