Heart Health of the South Shore
David J. Hersh, MD, FACC
Cardiologist located in Bellmore, NY
Cardiac stress tests provide important information about heart function that can be used to diagnose diseases and manage treatment. At Heart Health of the South Shore, Dr. David Hersh performs cardiac stress tests to identify problems and guide treatment to help patients in and around Bellmore, NY, and Freeport, NY, enjoy optimal cardiovascular health at every age.
Stress Test Q&A
What is a cardiac stress test?
Cardiac stress tests are exercise-based tests used to evaluate how well the heart responds to and functions during physical stress or exercise. Most stress tests are performed using a treadmill, but some may use a stationary bicycle. Patients are monitored continuously by the doctor or technician and the heart’s activity is monitored using an EKG.
When are stress tests performed?
Cardiac stress tests can provide very useful information for the diagnosis and management of many heart-related diseases and conditions. Some of their more common uses include:
- diagnosing and managing coronary artery disease
- diagnosing and managing congestive heart failure
- determining how much blood reaches the heart during physical activity
- evaluating ongoing treatments for heart disease
- assessing the heart’s function following a heart attack, after surgery or before having a medical procedure performed
- evaluating the heart’s valves and diagnosing rhythm problems
- determining a safe level of exercise and physical activity for people with heart disease
What happens during a cardiac stress test?
Prior to the stress test, patients may be asked to limit food intake or to alter their medication schedules. Patients should also wear comfortable shoes and loose-fitting clothing for the test. During the test, the patient will be asked to exercise at increasing levels of intensity while the heart is monitored via an EKG. The test is completed once a target heart rate is achieved or after a specified period of time. Some stress tests use ultrasounds of the heart (called echocardiograms) performed before and immediately after the test or injectable dyes to obtain more detailed images of the heart’s activity as well as the blood flow around and in the heart.
What if I can’t exercise?
For patients who are unable to perform the exercise portion of the test, special medications can be given by IV to simulate the effects of exercise on the heart. Patients will be closely monitored, just as they are during the exercise test.
Dr. Hersh accepts most major insurance. If you have any questions about your eligibility or coverage, please call our office. We are happy to help you.
Words from our patients
"I have never been treated nicer and its refreshing to finally find a physician in the Massapequa area who can care for us. Very satisfied!"
"I have moved my whole family over to Dr. Hersh. He is professional, thorough and the office is just wonderful!"