- Do not eat or drink for 4 hours prior to the test. This will help prevent the possibility of nausea, which may accompany vigorous exercise after eating. Sips of water are okay.
- If you are currently taking any heart medications, check with your doctor. He or she may ask you to stop certain medications a day or two before the test. This can help get more accurate test results. Do not take beta-blocker medication for twelve (12) hours prior tot he test. If you are using inhalers for asthma for emphysema please bring them with you. If you have any questions regarding your medications please call our office.
- Before the test, you'll be given a brief explanation of the procedure and you'll be asked to sign a consent form. Feel free to ask any questions prior to signing the consent.
- Wear loose and comfortable clothing that is suitable for exercise, preferably a shirt or blouse that opens in the front. Also wear comfortable flat walking shoes or sneakers.
- Several electrodes (small sticky patches) will be placed on your chest to obtain an electrocardiogram (ECG or EKG), a recording of your heart's electrical activity.
You will walk on a treadmill. The treadmill moves slowly at first, then the speed and incline increase gradually. Be sure to report any symptoms, such as chest pain or discomfort, dizziness, or severe shortness of breath. Try to exercise for as long as you are able to, because it increases the accuracy of the test. When you reach the point where you feel you can’t exercise for much longer, let the technician know.
Allow one (1) hour for the entire test, which includes preparation, the exercise portion and waiting time.
Your doctor will discuss the test results with you during a future office visit. The test results help the doctor make an accurate diagnosis and develop a treatment plan that’s best for you.