What is Stress ECHO ?

Stress echo is a test that uses ultrasound imaging to depict how well your heart muscle functions to pump blood to your body. A doctor usually recommends this test to detect a decrease in blood flow to your heart due to the narrowing of coronary arteries.

During a stress echo test, you will be asked by the doctor to exercise on a stationary bike or a treadmill while the doctor monitors your heart rhythm and blood pressure. When your heart rate reaches its peak levels, your doctor will take a few ultrasound images of your heart to check if the heart muscles are getting enough oxygen and blood when you exercise.

If you experience chest pain, your doctor will suggest this test if they think you suffer from myocardial infarction and coronary artery disease. A stress echo test will help your doctor to tell you how much exercise you can tolerate if you are in cardiac rehabilitation.

Sometimes, a stress echocardiography test helps your doctor to check how well treatments like angioplasty, bypass grafting, and antiarrhythmic medicines are working.

Why is stress echo test done ?

Your doctor might suggest the stress echo test to determine the following.

1. If there is a low supply of blood and oxygen to your heart while at rest and also when you exercise

2. If there has been reduced movement of your heart muscle

3. How quickly is your heartbeat coming back to normal after exercise?

Which tests are performed under stress echo ?

The tests performed under stress echo test are as follows. :

1. Exercise Stress Echo

2. Dobutamine Stress Echocardiogram

What to expect from a Stress Echo ?

If the results of your stress echo test are normal, then your heart is functioning properly, and your blood vessels are not blocked because of coronary artery disease.

Unusual results can indicate your heart is not pumping blood because of a blockage in the blood vessels.

Another possible reason is damage from a heart attack. Assessing the risk of heart attacks and diagnosing coronary artery disease early on can prevent complications in the future.

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