A stress test is the most common kind of cardiac test. This test is designed to look for blood flood problems arising from blocked arteries within the heart. The stress test is also designed to evaluate the response that the heart has to exercise.
The most common kind of stress test requires a patient to walk on a treadmill until their heart rate and blood pressure are increased. This gives the doctor the information that they need to evaluate the way the heart is responding to exercise. Some people may not be physically well enough to do a standard treadmill stress test. In these cases, a chemical stress test can be administered as an alternative.
A stress test usually takes no more than an hour or so from beginning to end. Patients should dress comfortably in loose fitting clothing and sturdy walking shoes. It is best to eat at least a light meal or snack prior to the test. Patients should also make sure to drink plenty of water ahead of the test since they will be losing body fluids as they sweat during the stress test. The doctor will advise patients regarding their current medications before the test. Some medications may need to be discontinued for a short time prior to the testing.
There are several other in-house cardiac tests, as well. A cardiac ultrasound, also called an echocardiogram, is a common cardiac test. The doctor may also perform defibrillator evaluations, pacemaker evaluations, and many other types of cardiac tests if they are needed. Since all of these tests are done on-site, results are obtained much faster than they would otherwise be.
At Internal Medicine & Family Practice, we accept most major medical insurance plans. Here is a short list of just some of the most popular plans we accept. Please contact our office if you do not see your insurance provider listed.