If your doctor recommends a stress test, it's primarily for your benefit. The detrimental effects of stress (physical and emotional) include high blood pressure, weight loss/gain, mood swings, and unhealthy coping strategies. A stress test is an evaluation performed by one of our doctors at Virgin Islands Orthopaedics and Medical Specialists in St. Thomas and St. Croix to determine how your heart will perform under stress and to check for irregular heartbeats. The test can also determine if chest pain or difficulty breathing during exercise is related to a heart condition.
What Happens During A Stress Test?
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How Do I Prepare? Inform your doctor about any medications you are taking before your appointment. Our doctor may ask you to fast for two to four hours before the test and only drink water. Wear loose-fitting clothing and rubber-soled walking shoes for comfort. Shorts or sweatpants are also appropriate, as are jogging or tennis shoes. If you use an inhaler for breathing problems, bring it to the test and ensure your doctor is aware of it.
What Happens During the Test? Doctors take blood pressure and pulse before the stress test. Electrodes are placed on the chest and back and connected to an electrocardiograph machine, which records the heart's electrical activity. Our doctor will ask you to walk on a treadmill or ride a stationary bike during the test. Every 2 or 3 minutes, they will increase the speed and slope of the treadmill or stationary bike, giving you the sensation of walking or pedaling uphill. After the test, your doctor may allow you to rest.
A stress test is used to determine how erratic, burdened, or unmanageable your life feels, which indicates stress. For more information or to schedule an appointment with Dr. Ahmet Sayan at Virgin Islands Orthopaedics and Medical Specialists in St. Thomas and St. Croix, please call the St. Croix office by calling (340) 692-5000 or in St. Thomas by calling (340) 714-2845.