During a stress test, the patient walks on a treadmill that gradually speeds up, making the heart work progressively harder. This helps gauge the tolerance of heart muscle under strain and cardiac capacity. An electrocardiogram (ECG) monitors your heart's electrical rhythms, blood pressure is monitored, and the patient is monitored for symptoms like chest discomfort or fatigue.
Abnormalities in blood pressure, heart rate, ECG, or worsening physical symptoms could point to coronary artery disease (CAD). While a stress test is not an absolute indicator of this condition, findings should be analyzed and monitored by a certified cardiologist. While abnormal results may be a false alarm, further testing is required to confirm. Stress tests detect severely narrowed arteries (70% or more). Heart attacks often result from lesser blockages that rupture and form clots.
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