Nuclear stress test can help save your heart and your life. A diagnostic imaging test, it shows the condition of your blood flow when the heart is at rest or in motion. With this, you can take immediate precautionary measures to take good care of your heart and prevent serious coronary artery diseases.
Why You Need the Heart Stress Test
It is your physician who decides if it is necessary for you to undergo this test. Here are the common reasons:
- to verify if the symptoms you are experiencing such as chest pain are from coronary artery disease and/or any other heart ailments, especially when other tests may not suffice. Through the image it produces, the test allows your physician to look at your heart when under stress and see if there is anything that prevents blood to circulate freely in your heart depriving it of the oxygen it needs.
- it serves as a necessary precaution before surgical procedures, as the test shows your physician if there is any risk for heart complications. From the result, your physician decides what is best; for instance, proceed with the surgery or defer it until resolution of the issue.
- to check if your heart is responding well to treatment. This applies when you have been previously diagnosed with coronary artery disease or other heart ailments, and you have been placed under treatment. It can also help your physician prescribe the best treatment for you considering how your heart performs under stress.
Getting Ready for the Nuclear Stress Test
In getting ready to undergo a nuclear stress test, your physician may recommend the following:
- Abstain from eating your food and drinking any beverages including water after midnight or two hours before the conduct of the test. You should also avoid smoking at this time. If you are taking certain medicines, your physician decides whether or not to continue taking it while you prepare for the test.
- It is crucial that you tell your physician all medication including supplements you are taking. This will help him form his recommendation and decision. Do not stop your medication unless your physician orders you to do so. For asthma-related treatment such as inhaler, you have to bring it with you during the test.
- You will have to bring comfortable, preferably loose clothing to wear for the test. Wear non-skid shoes, as the test requires you to perform specific exercises. You should be as comfortable as possible when performing the nuclear stress test.
This article is not a medical advice, it’s purpose is only informational. Always consult a doctor regarding medical procedures.