You may not have any signs or symptoms of coronary artery disease while you are just sitting there quietly reading this post. In fact, your symptoms may occur only during exertion, as narrowed arteries struggle to carry enough blood to feed a heart muscle that’s screaming for oxygen under increased demand. Enter the diagnostic stress test, used to mimic the cardiac effects of exercise to assess your risk of coronary artery disease.
During stress testing, you exercise (walk/run on a treadmill or pedal a stationary bike) to make your heart work harder and beat faster. An EKG (also called ECG) is recorded while you exercise to monitor any abnormal changes in your heart under stress, with or without the aid of medications to enhance this effect.
But consider this blunt warning from Dr. Kevin Klauer: Continue reading “Stress test vs flipping a coin: which is more accurate?”