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An exercise stress test shows how your heart works when you are physically active. While you're exercising on either a treadmill or a stationary bike, an electrocardiograph or ECG (also known as an EKG) records your heart’s electrical activity, allowing your doctor to see changes in your heart rate. While you're exercising, a nurse or physician assistant will watch your other vital signs, such as breathing and body temperature.
Electrode patches will be attached to your body. These patches are connected to the ECG monitor, which will record your heart rate throughout the test. You will then be asked to begin exercising on the treadmill or stationary bicycle. When your heart rate has increased to a certain level, you will stop and rest. Your heart will continue to be checked until the rate returns to normal.
What can my doctor learn from this test?
The test provides valuable information about the condition of your heart.
Reasons why an exercise stress test may be performed include: