Stress Test

What is a stress test?

An electrocardiographic medical examination that is generally used to make a diagnosis and assessment of coronary insufficiency or angina pectoris is known as a stress test or ergometry. It is usually the final part of a sports medical examination.

What does the stress test consist of?

To perform a stress test, a static or ergonometric bicycle is used following a methodology of progression in the overload of the same according to an official protocol marked.

The patient is monitored during the test to control the pulse rate, blood pressure, oxygen consumption and electrocardiographic changes, as well as the clinical response to exercise (pain, fatigue…).

Why is the stress test performed?

Over the years, the use of this diagnostic test has expanded, but it cannot be performed on all patients suffering from heart disease pathologies because it may involve some risks due to the effort involved in its execution.

Preparation for the stress test

Before the patient undergoes a stress test, the specialist will conduct a clinical interview by asking about the patient’s family and personal history and habits. After this interview, a complete examination of the respiratory, cardiovascular and locomotor systems is performed.

This examination is complemented by a kinanthropometry study to analyze the patient’s weight, height, body mass index (BMI) and fat, bone and muscle percentage.

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What does the test feel like?

The patient will wear electrodes, known as conductive patches, on the chest to record the heart’s activity. These may cause a mild burning or stinging sensation.

Risks of the stress test

Although the stress test is generally safe, it may cause chest pain or fainting in some people.

What abnormal results mean

Abnormal results may be due to heart rhythms during exercise or changes in your ECG. When this occurs, other tests such as cardiac catheterization, nuclear stress test, or stress echocardiography may be recommended.