A stress test measures your heart health and how well your heart pumps blood, especially during exercise. A stress test may seem like a chore, but it can help diagnose and monitor many complications. If you would like to know more, check out these three reasons you should consider stress testing.
1. You Show Signs of Coronary Heart Disease
Coronary heart disease is the leading cause of death in America. It's largely caused by poor diet. When you eat foods high in cholesterol over a long period of time, it puts you at risk of plaque buildup in the arteries. In turn, you are more likely to develop coronary heart disease. You may also be more likely to experience a heart attack or stroke. Other causes of coronary heart disease include:
- Lack of exercise/sedentary lifestyle
- High blood pressure
- Uncontrolled diabetes
With a stress test, your doctor looks for signs of heart disease. While some patients may need medication, lifestyle changes can go a long way in lowering your cholesterol and reducing the risk of heart disease. If you get diagnosed with coronary heart disease, regular stress tests can monitor your health to ensure treatment and lifestyle changes are working.
2. You Have a Heart Arrhythmia
An arrhythmia is an irregularity in your heartbeat. There are many causes of arrhythmias, and some are more dangerous than others. Some causes of heart arrhythmia include scarring from previous heart attacks, current heart attacks, blocked arteries, changes in the heart's structure, etc. Some lifestyle habits can also increase your risk of arrhythmia, such as smoking or consuming lots of caffeine.
With a stress test, your doctor monitors the electrical impulses of your heart to better understand the cause of the arrhythmia. They can also help pinpoint risk factors that increase your risk and make necessary suggestions for treatments and changes.
3. You're Having Surgery
Not everyone who needs surgery needs a stress test, but if you already have a weak heart, your doctor may recommend one to ensure the heart is strong enough for surgery. Similarly, if you're having surgery on your heart for a condition, a stress test can help the doctor determine what surgery is needed, such as a valve transplant.
If you think your heart health is declining, don't wait any longer. A stress test can determine your heart health, and lifestyle changes can help boost your health. If you would like to know more, contact a doctor in your area today.