Exercise Stress Testing
An exercise stress test is commonly conducted by health professionals to determine cardiac function of people with heart disease risk factors.
- procedure: A progressive and maximum exercise test (starting from a walking pace and gradually increasing pace) is performed while the electrical impulses from the heart tissue are recorded by surface electrodes places on the chest wall.
- equipment required: Exercise machine such as a treadmill or exercise bike, a 12-lead ECG machine and leads, sticking tape, clips and other sundries as required.
- analysis: Specialist training is required to interpret exercise ECG traces. Many of the stress testing machines can perform basic analysis, though these should not be relied on fully and a well trained human eye should look at the results before any conclusions are made.
- comments: See your doctor is you think you need a stress test performed. A stress test can pick up early changes in the heart function indicating potential heart disease. The test is also known as a cardiac stress test.
- qualifications: Stress tests are either performed by a medical practitioner, or a qualified health specialist with a doctor nearby.