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Posts for tag: Stress Test

By Grand Rapids Cardiology
May 22, 2019
Category: Cardiology
Tags: Stress Test  

Find out why this test is performed and what it can tell you about your heart health.

Has our Grand Rapids, MI, cardiologist Dr. Ronald VanderLaan recently told you that you or a family member should get a stress test? If doctorso, you may be wondering what a stress test is and why it’s important to have one performed. Many people throughout the course of their lives may have to undergo this simple exercise test.

What is a stress test and what happens during it?

During a stress test, you’ll be hooked up to a heart monitor. You’ll walk on a treadmill at a slow, steady pace. Over time, your Grand Rapids, MI, heart doctor will increase the speed and the incline. As you pick up speed your doctor will look for any changes in your heart rate, respiration and blood pressure that could signal a problem. This test also allows us to check blood supply as it goes through the arteries and the heart.

Who may need to undergo a stress test?

Your cardiologist may recommend a stress test if,

  • You are experiencing certain symptoms such as chest pain or trouble breathing
  • You have an irregular heartbeat
  • You want to know the appropriate amount and kind of physical activity that is right for you before beginning a new exercise routine
  • You are taking new medication for your heart disease and your doctor wants to make sure the medication is working


How do you prepare for a stress test?

Your cardiologist will talk to you about what you should and shouldn’t do prior to your stress test. Please let us know about any medications you are taking, including supplements, as you may not be allowed to take some of these medications before your test. In some cases, your doctor may tell you to abstain from eating or drinking for a few hours before the test.

For your test, you will want to wear the same kind of clothing that you would wear for a run or to the gym. This means comfortable, loose-fitted clothing and good walking shoes that provide your feet with ample support. If you feel the need to stop the test at any time don’t hesitate to tell your doctor.

What will my cardiologist be monitoring during my stress test?

You will be hooked up to a heart monitor that will measure,

  • Heart rate
  • Blood pressure
  • Respiration rate
  • Your heart waves (through an electrocardiogram)
  • How tired you feel

The stress test itself only takes about 10 to 15 minutes but expect your appointment to last anywhere from 40 minutes to one hour.

Do you want to start a new workout routine? Are you experiencing chest discomfort or changes in heart rhythm in Grand Rapids, MI? If so, it’s important that you turn to a cardiologist right away for answers. Call Grand Rapids Cardiology today.

By Grand Rapids Cardiology
January 21, 2019
Category: Cardiology

Find out what a stress test can tell us about the health of your heart.

Cardiology Stress TestHas our Grand Rapids, MI, cardiologist Dr. Ronald VanderLaan recommended that you or a loved one get a stress test? If so, you may be wondering what this test involves and why it’s necessary. To put it simply, a stress test is performed so that our cardiologist can see just how well your heart is functioning.


Who needs a stress test?

If you are displaying any symptoms of heart disease such as chest pain, shortness of breath, or an irregular heartbeat, we may advise you to get a stress test to figure out what’s causing your symptoms. A stress test is one of the best tools for being able to diagnose any heart problems.

If you are at an increased risk for heart disease, have diabetes, or possess any other risk factors, your doctor may recommend that you get a stress test. You may also need one to see how well the heart is responding to certain medications.


What is involved in a stress test?

During a stress test at our Grand Rapids practice, our cardiologist will check your vitals such as heart rate, breathing, and blood pressure. We will also evaluate whether you are out of breath or fatigued during certain levels of physical exertion. This stress test can shed light on certain heart issues that may be present such as poor blood supply to certain arteries in the heart.

The test only takes about 15 minutes and patients won’t be allowed to eat or drink for 2 hours prior to the test. Patients should also avoid caffeine, which can impact their results. As you will be walking and running at different speeds on a treadmill, it’s important that you wear comfortable clothes.

Before beginning the test, we will apply electrodes to specific areas of the body, which will allow us to measure electrical activity within the heart during your test. If the patient is unable to perform an exercise stress test, an IV will be administered that will deliver medication to stimulate the heart in the same way as exercise.


Concerned? Give us a Call!

If you are experiencing chest pain or other symptoms in Grand Rapids, MI, it’s important that you don’t ignore these issues. The team at Grand Rapids Cardiology offers a full range of diagnostic testing to figure out what’s going on and how to best treat the problem. Call us today at (616) 717-5141 to learn more about the services we offer!

By Grand Rapids Cardiology
December 18, 2018
Category: Cardiology
Tags: Stress Test  

A stress test is an examination that can help cardiologists see how well a heart is working and how to treat any problems. Led by Dr. Ronald VanderLaan, Grand Rapids Cardiology, located in Grand Rapids, MI, offers various types of stress testing to assess your heart health. Read on to learn more!


A stress test is a cardiological test that measures your heart's ability to respond to external stress. The stress response is induced by exercise or intravenous pharmacological stimulation. In other words, the test will involve riding a stationary bike or walking on a treadmill while your breathing, blood pressure, and heart rhythm are monitored, or you will receive medication that mimics the effects of exercise.

Why it's Done

Your doctor may recommend a stress test to diagnose heart rhythm problems or coronary artery disease. If you've been diagnosed with a heart condition, a stress test can help your healthcare provider find out how well treatment is working. In people with heart failure, stress test results may help their healthcare provider determine whether they need a heart transplant or other advanced therapies.


How You Prepare

Your cardiologist will give you instructions on how to prepare for your stress test. You may be asked not to drink, eat, consume caffeine, or smoke for a period of time before the procedure. In addition, you should ask your healthcare provider if it's safe for you to continue taking all of your medications before the test, as they might interfere with the stress test.

Test Results

If the information gathered during your stress test shows that your heart function to be normal, you may not need any further tests. If your test results suggest that you might have an arrhythmia or coronary artery disease, your healthcare provider will use the information to develop a treatment plan. You may need further tests, such as a coronary angiogram.

Interested? Give Us a Call!

Ready to take control of your heart health? Call Grand Rapids Cardiology at 616-717-5141 today to schedule an appointment Dr. Ronald VanderLaan in Grand Rapids, MI. A simple stress test screening could save your life!