The Importance of a Stress Test
By Grand Rapids Cardiology
December 23, 2019
Category: Cardiology
Tags: Stress Test  

What's your risk of having a heart attack or developing coronary artery disease? At Grand Rapids Cardiology, Dr. Ronald VanderLaan performs a wide range of cardiac assessments, including the stress test (with or without contrast dye). Also called the exercise stress test, this 30-minute in-office examination yields valuable information for your cardiac health and peace of mind—read on to learn more!

Who exactly is a cardiac stress test?

A stress test tells your Grand Rapids cardiologist how well you tolerate exercise. Does your heart muscle receive sufficient oxygenation during increased physical activity? Do you have obstructed coronary arteries or a heart arrhythmia? Can you succeed at a gym workout? How should your cardiac treatment plan look?

Dr. Vanderlaan orders this simple treadmill test to answer these questions and more. Before the test, you will fast and refrain from tobacco for two to four hours. During the test, you will be asked to walk on a treadmill or ride a stationary bike. Typically, the machine is placed on an incline and your heart rate, respiration, and EKG are fully monitored throughout. The assessment has different phases each with different resistance challenges. You will reach a specific, pre-determined heart rate before you finish the total assessment.

Is an exercise stress test dangerous?

Absolutely not—while this reliable diagnostic tool detects heart and circulatory problems, it does not precipitate one. Your cardiologist and medical team are on-hand the entire time to monitor your activity and stop the exam if you have a heart rate, blood pressure, or respiratory issue. Dr. VanderLaan may give you the results of your stress test once he evaluates your EKG tracings.

Know your risk for cardiovascular disease

The American Heart Association reports that one person in the United States succumbs to a heart attack or stroke every 40 seconds. At Grand Rapids Cardiology, Dr. VanderLaan and his team will help you know and reduce your cardiac risk and lead a healthier life. Call us today for a consultation: (616) 717-5141.