What Happens During an Exercise Stress Test?

When you arrive we’ll bring you back to the exercise room and start by getting an ECG (electrocardiogram), which monitors your heart rhythm.

To make sure we get a good understanding of how your heart is working, we will put 10 patches, called electrodes, on your chest, and a blood pressure cuff on your arm to check your blood pressure a few times during your test. When these are all set up, we’ll turn on the treadmill and have you start walking.

We’ll start you off at a slow speed and then gradually increase the speed and incline of the treadmill every three minutes to try and get your heart rate to a certain number, based on your age. Once you exercise to the target level or if we see significant changes on the heart monitor, we’ll slow the treadmill down. Overall, you could be on the treadmill for up to 10 minutes.

When you get off of the treadmill, we’ll have you stick around for another 10 minutes so that we can monitor how you’re doing while your heart rate comes back down to normal.