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Your workouts not only boost your heart health, they can also serve as your body’s “check engine” light.

If you spend a few sessions in a row struggling to run the same pace or complete the same circuit you usually do for no apparent reason, talk to your doctor.

Exercise Tests

Sometimes called a treadmill test, the test helps the doctor to find out how well your heart handles work. As the body works harder during the test, it requires more oxygen, so the heart must pump more blood. The test can show if the blood supply is reduced in the arteries that supply the heart. It also helps doctors know the kind and level of exercise appropriate for a patient.

Coronary Artery Disease Diagnosis

The coronary arteries are the major blood vessels that supply your heart with blood, oxygen and nutrients. Coronary artery disease develops when these arteries become damaged or diseased usually due to a buildup of deposits containing cholesterol and other substances.

Arrhythmias Diagnosis

Heart arrhythmias occur when the electrical impulses that coordinate the heart rhythm don’t function properly, causing your heart to beat too fast, too slowly or irregularly.

Heart Disorders Treatment Guide

If the patient had already been diagnosed with a heart condition, an exercise stress test can help the doctor determine how well treatment is working. It may also be used to help establish the treatment plan for the patient by showing how much exercise the heart can handle.



The patient may be asked not to eat, drink, or smoke two hours or more before the test. Caffeine or some medications can interfere with the stress test and the patient should ask the doctor if it is to be avoided on the day before the test. Else, the patient can take their medications as usual. If the patient uses an inhaler for asthma or other breathing problem, it is important to let the doctor know that the patient uses it and will be asked to bring it to the test. Lastly, the patient needs to wear or bring comfortable clothes and walking shoes to the test.


During Test

The patient is hooked up to the equipment to monitor the heart. Then the patient walks slowly in place on a treadmill as the speed is increased at a faster pace while the treadmill is tilted like going up in a small hill. The patient may be asked to breath into a tube for a couple of minutes and afterward, the patient will have to sit or lie down to have their heart and blood pressure checked.



The heart rate, breathing, blood pressure, electrocardiogram (ECG), and how worn-out the patient feels is monitored during the test and depending on these results, the physician may recommend further tests such as a nuclear stress test or cardiac catheterization.

Exercise Stress Tests

The patient may not need any further tests if the result from the exercise stress test reveals that the patient’s heart functions are normal. However, if the results are normal and the symptoms continue or become worse, the doctor may recommend that the patient should have a nuclear stress test or another exercise stress test that includes an echocardiogram before and after exercise. These tests are more accurate and provide more information about the patient’s heart function but are much likely expensive.

If the purpose of the exercise stress test was to guide treatment for the patient’s heart condition, the doctor will use data from the test to establish or modify the treatment plan, as needed.

If the results of the exercise stress test suggest coronary artery disease or reveal an arrhythmia, the information gathered during the test will be used to help the doctor develop a treatment plan. The patient may need additional tests and evaluations, such as a coronary angiogram, depending on the findings.

Understanding your heart

Six Important Things About Your Heart

Adult heart beats about 10,000 times each day 01.

Do the math, and that’s at least about one beat per second, or 60 to 100 times per minute, according to American Heart Association.

Age and fitness level affect your heart rate 02.

Generally, as children grow or adults get fitter, the heart rates gets slower.

Heart disease isn’t only the number one killer of men, it’s also the top killer for women 03.

Your heart doesn’t care if you’re from Mars or Venus.

Dr Janssens Consulting Services

04. Want to know how big your heart is? Make a fist.

Heart size depends on the size of the person as well as the condition of their heart. Generally speaking, a healthy heart is about the size of the person’s fist.

05. Your heart rate drops while you sleep.

At night, it’s common for heart rates to drop below 60bpm.

06. Heart attack symptoms are different for men and women.

Although heart disease is an equal opportunity killer, symptoms of heart attack show up differently in men versus women.

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