What is a cardiolite stress test?

August 26, 2011

A cardiolite stress test is a test used to check the health and efficiency of the blood circulation mechanism that feeds the heart. The heart has to pump with extra force when the individual is under physical strain. This is done to feed the various muscles of the body that are straining. However, the heart’s own muscles are also under stress in such a situation. These muscles therefore need extra nourishment. This nourishment comes to the muscles through increased blood flow. The cardiolite stress test is used to determine the efficiency of this blood flow and to check for any abnormalities.

The cardiolite stress test procedure involves the use of a radioactive tracer material. The patient will be made to exercise on a treadmill so that his or her heart is stressed. When the heart is beating rapidly, the blood flow to it is mapped using an imaging machine. This mapping is aided by the fact that there is a tracer dye within the blood. The exact nature of the flow of blood to the heart can therefore be examined. The doctor may also check various other aspects relating to the functioning of the heart such as the heart rate, blood pressure and electrical rhythms of the heart during this procedure.

The cardiolite stress test can be performed on an outpatient basis. The patient may not be allowed to return home if some obvious and serious abnormality is detected in the heart during the test. The images produced during testing may be analyzed again once the test is over so that a thorough and accurate analysis of the information is performed. There is no major preparation required for a cardiolite stress test. The patient should be on a relatively empty stomach, only to ensure that he or she is not uncomfortable during the process of exercise. Digestion tends to be affected when one exercises too soon after eating food. Therefore, one should be on a relatively empty stomach. However, fasting is not required and is, in fact, counterproductive as it leads to the individual suffering from a lack of energy when he or she is required to run on the treadmill. The entire procedure of the test takes between 30 and 90 minutes to be completed. The doctor may wish to take several more images of the heart as it comes back to rest once the treadmill run has been completed.

Submitted by N on August 26, 2011 at 05:33

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