Your guide to an exercise ECG (stress test) 

Do you have a stress test coming up? Watch this video to find out what to expect.

Find out the causes of heart disease

Transcript of Your guide to an exercise ECG (stress test)

BRITISH HEART FOUNDATION THE ROAD AHEAD: YOUR GUIDE TOEXERCISE ECG (STRESS TEST) This film will show you what to expectif you are having an exercise ECG, often called a stress or exercise test. - My name is Gerard Dunn.- GERARD, 55, BUILDER I live in Surrey.And I'm a builder by occupation. I'm here today to have a stress test because they found the rhythm ofmy heart isn't working properly. My name is Parisha Khan and I'm a cardiac physiologistat St George's Hospital. An exercise ECG is basicallya test to see how the heart performs when it's under stress. So what we're looking at isthe electrical activity of the heart and also blood pressure changes whilea patient is walking on the treadmill. I'm a bit apprehensive about it,but at the same time, I've got to think of the future. Whatever the hospital needs to doto get me back to full health, I'm willing to go for it. We prepare the patient by asking themto remove their top clothes and if you're a female,you'll be given a hospital gown. We'll put electrodes on the chest and they'll be hooked up toan ECG recording and a blood pressure cuffaround their arm. They will be asked towalk on the treadmill. Every three minutes, the treadmillwill get steeper and faster and during each stage of exercise,we measure the blood pressure. - Happy?- Yes. We try and encourage the patientto do as much as they can. Obviously, they need to tell usif they have any symptoms at all. We will also be monitoring the bloodpressure, the heart rate and the ECG. The test from start to finish,from the patient coming in, being set up and from themactually leaving the room, it takes about half an hour. If the patient has had enoughor if we see anything significant, the machine is slowed downand then we recover the patient for at least five minutes. We want your blood pressureand your heart rate to come down to how it was before we started. You need to catchyour breath first as well. (Gerard) The test was fine,but as the minutes went on, I could feel the pressureand my breathing got a lot faster. (Parisha) Once the blood pressure,heart rate and ECG go back to pretty muchas it was to start with, we end the test and then the resultsare sent to the doctor. The advice I would give, if it's been recommended, go and do it,listen to your doctors. (narrator) Heart disease is stillthe single biggest killer in the UK. But for over 50 years,we've tirelessly pioneered research that has helped transform the lives of people with heartand circulatory conditions. Join our fight forevery heartbeat in the UK. Every pound raised,every minute of your time and every donation to our shopswill help make a difference. BHF THANKS ST GEORGE'S HOSPITALFOR HELP WITH THIS FILM FIGHT FOR EVERY HEARTBEATbhf.org.uk BRITISH HEART FOUNDATION

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