Stress Echocardiogram

All valid referrals for diagnostic tests are BULK BILLED, except for blood pressure monitor which does not have Medicare rebate.

A stress echocardiography assesses the possibilities that you have significant narrowings in your heart arteries. By comparing your heart function before and after exercise using echocardiography, your cardiologist can determine whether enough blood is getting to your heart or if a narrowing is restricting this supply. The test involves three steps-

  • Firstly a transthoracic echocardiogram is performed to assess the resting structure and function of your heart.
  • You will then be asked to perform exercise on a treadmill while being monitored.
  • After the exercise treadmill is complete another echocardiogram is performed  to assess your hearts pump function after stress.

Procedure information
If you are taking certain medications, your cardiologist may ask you to hold off taking this medication on the day of the test. This will be confirmed prior to your procedure.

Men should wear comfortable two-piece clothing allowing access to the chest area and comfortable walking shoes/runners. Areas of chest hair may need to be shaved to allow the electrodes to adhere to the skin. If required the technician will do this at the time of the test.

Ladies should wear comfortable two-piece clothing allowing access to the chest area and comfortable walking shoes/runners.

A loose fitting gown will be provided.

Risk

Complications are rare during both exercise stress echocardiography.

  • Heart attack or abnormal heart rhythms may occur rarely.
  • The risk of death is about 1 in 10,000.

Medications which may affect the test (Discuss with Doctor before the test)- to be stopped 48 hrs before the test.

  • Calcium antagonists: Verapamil (Isoptin, Cordilox), diltiazem (Cardizem, Vasocardol, Diltahexal), lercanidipine (Zanidip, Zan-Extra).
  • Betablockers: metoprolol (Betaloc, Minax ),Atenolol (Tenormin, Noten),) Nebivilol( Nebilet), carvedilol (Dilatrend, Kredex, Dilasig), bisoprolol (Bicor), sotalol (Sotacor, Sotahexal), labetalol (Presalol, Trandate), pindolol (Visken,Barbloc), propranolol (Inderal).
  • Digoxin (Lanoxin, Lanoxin PG)
  • Antiarrhythmics: Amiodarone (Cordarone, Aratac).
North Side Cardiology